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Main Discussion Zone => Evolution & Creationism => Topic started by: median on August 31, 2013, 10:39:08 AM

Title: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on August 31, 2013, 10:39:08 AM
It is so often the case that Christians, theists, and religious people in general attempt what I like to call The Impossibility Argument. Basically, the argument goes something like this:

P1-X phenomena looks intelligently designed
P2-If the likeliness of X occurring w/out a designer is very low then it is impossible without an intelligent designer
P3-Complexity and fragility indicate a designer for X
P4-The occurrence of X shows signs of complexity, fragility, and a low likeliness w/out an intelligent designer
C-Therefore, X is impossible without an intelligent designer


This argument is often used in relation to the origin of the universe "from nothing" in cosmology, the alleged "fine tuning" of cosmological constants in our universe, or common descent (evolutionary common ancestry) in biology. I would like to know your response to it. Is it sound? Why or why not?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wright on August 31, 2013, 12:35:38 PM
This is a restating of the Argument from Incredulity. The theist is equating their personal lack of comprehension as to why a given phenomena arises without intelligent direction with a universal constant.

If they're open to new evidence, that incomprehension can sometimes be addressed by showing them how X, despite its seeming complexity and fragility can arise naturally. The evolution of the vertebrate eyeball is a good example; Darwin himself found it useful in his work. We can find eyes at many levels of complexity in organisms alive today, clearly serving their owners quite well:http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB921_1.html (http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB921_1.html)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wheels5894 on August 31, 2013, 03:19:59 PM
It's no quite the argument from incredulity, at least not to the person putting the argument forward anyway. I listened to Alvin Plantinga  (http://english.turkcebilgi.com/Alvin+Plantinga)lecture some years ago and the basis of his lecture series really amounted to what Median sets out above.

The real problem with that style of argument is the fact that the proponent of the argument doesn't have any way to show that the likelihood of something is low or high and even whether that matters as far as the possible event happening is concerned. After all, we know that extremely unlikely events do actually happen - people win lotteries at tiny odds for example. I think where proponents of this sort of argument fall down is not understanding that very tiny chances of something happening is not the same thing as that event will never happen and neither is it the same as saying that the event would take nearly for ever to happen. After all, I could win a lottery the first time I try!

The other thing that is not appreciated is that in terms of evolution, the numbers of individuals involved is huge so that one is not waiting for eternity for one single amoeba to evolve into something else - one is waiting for vast numbers of amoebas to change and that cuts the time and reduces the odds of it happening.


As for religious folks getting into cosmology - well it's just madness. Scientists are trying to grapple with the maths of how it might have happened as well as straining the limits of practical science to look for evidence. These are some of the best brains on the planet. We do not have a clear picture of what happened, yet theists insist that because we don't have that clear picture 'god-did-it'! They get shirty if one asks how god arrived on the scene though!
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Graybeard on August 31, 2013, 03:49:37 PM
Imagine that you are out shopping. You are going to have people pass by you quite closely. Look at one of those people: Both your life and their life were so arranged that on that day, in that place and at that time, your lives met!

How amazing is that? From both of your births, this moment was destined. Surely there is some god or other somewhere? Or does that mean that god spends all his time arranging such events? It would at least explain why he has no time to heal amputees.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on August 31, 2013, 04:04:53 PM
The one thing that intrigues me the most about The Impossibility Argument is that religious believers literally have no data to work with by which to support the premise when they advance it. How do they know it is impossible for the universe to have arisen from what we otherwise observe (and call) "nothing"? How do they know the evolutionary processes of common descent is impossible? As with most things pertaining to their faith, it seems faithers are willing to just assume the very thing they need to prove - and this is because the overwhelming majority of them came to believe the things they do, not by evidence or good reason, but by responding to an appeal to emotion and the willingness to practice intellectual laziness in order to satiate their "I just have to have an answer!" mentality.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on August 31, 2013, 06:02:18 PM
They seem to think thusly: "Lemme see, with regards to the issue at hand, you, an atheist, have a variety of sciences to back up your claim about thing X. Astronomy, physics, mathematics, chemistry, repeated observations, confirmation from CERN, accurate predictions and other things I don't like. But I, as a believer, would be greatly inconvenienced if your argument is true, hence I must protest and make stuff up and in general flutter through reality looking for tiny bits of hope that might, if I squint just right, back up what I want to be true. Why can't you respect that?"

But given that most believers prove they have no standards for proof once they accept the god thing, I guess this problem shouldn't be too surprising.





Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Mooby on August 31, 2013, 10:31:17 PM
It's a variation of argument from probability.


An interesting way to counter it:
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on September 01, 2013, 12:25:56 AM
^^^ An interesting rebuttal indeed. However, I'm surprised that you are not (at least in part) persuaded by this kind of argument. It is only your personal experience that leads you to think there is a deity?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Mooby on September 01, 2013, 02:09:49 AM
I'm not persuaded by the argument because I understand how probability works.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wright on September 01, 2013, 02:12:07 AM
It's a variation of argument from probability.

Thanks, Mooby. You, median and wheels are right; it's not really incredulity so much as a misunderstanding of probability.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on September 01, 2013, 09:31:14 AM
Mooby

This is merely a question. Your card-shuffling post said that if you had a trillion shuffling machines, any given shuffle couldn't possibly exist (using the logic you were countering).

If you had 185,599,780,135,320,806,725,326,905,205 trillion shuffling machines, could it? (Understanding that there isn't enough material in the universe to make that many shuffling machines and decks of cards).

Note: That huge number is the one you gave as the odds against a specific shuffle.

I'm asking because the "1 trillion shufflling machines" number seemed a bit arbitrary. And you usually aren't arbitrary.  :)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Mooby on September 01, 2013, 10:03:17 AM
1017 and 1067 are 1050 apart. When multiplying, we add exponents. So if the number of machines x the number of shuffles per second equals 10 50 (say, 1025 each or however else you want to distribute it), your odds would reach 4.34/8.07 or ~54%.

I picked trillion (1012) because it is the largest large number most people can name and have some scope of size. Most people can't appreciate exponential notation's size as well.

The point is that we do something that looks like more mathematically impossible than evolution as a game without thinking anything of it.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on September 01, 2013, 10:22:20 AM
Thank you Mooby. I was guessing that you choose one trillion because it was easy to understand, but I wasn't sure.

I am also aware that very few people understand what a trillion is. I googled it (I understood the zeros, but it is hard to picture such large numbers). I found this little article (http://www.zerohedge.com/article/what-does-trillion-dollars-look-0), and thought "Okay, I get it". Then I thought about it a little more. The trillion illustrated in said article is of hundred dollar bills. So it pictures only one percent of a trillion. Crap that's a big number.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Mooby on September 01, 2013, 10:52:46 AM
Yes, and if you put that money in a warehouse and 1000 of those warehouses into a really large lot, you get 1015. And if you put 1000 of those lots around the country, you get 1018. And if you get 1000 of those countries across the planet, you get 1021. And if you put 1000 of those planets in a solar system, you get 1024. And if you put 1000 of those solar systems in a galaxy, you get 1027. And if you put 1000 of those galaxies in a star system, you get 1027. And if you put 1000 of those star systems in a universe, you get 1030. And if you put 1000 of those universes in a multiverse, you get 1033 and are just under halfway to understanding how big 1067 is.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: shnozzola on September 01, 2013, 12:25:51 PM
This place, WWGHA, that constantly digs into the depths of whether a god exists, from every angle we can imagine - may assume that theists dig into and analyze their beliefs in the same way.

I believe many theists are content with the "god is beautiful" level of theism, and merrily go their way throughout life, liking Daniel in the lion's den, Jonah and the whale, Noah,  Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,  Godspell, Jesus Christ Superstar, etc., and are happy with the delusion as they sing, and buy their french fries and cokes.
 
They do not consider the math proof of their position.  It is a happy, surface god belief.  I don't think they get to the level of The Impossibility Argument.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on September 01, 2013, 02:16:49 PM
and are just under halfway to understanding how big 1067 is.
Not to rain on your parade, but given that 1036 is a thousand times greater than 1033, wouldn't that be a lot less than halfway to understanding how bit 1067 is?

I mean, the difference in scale between a human (1.7 * 100 meters) and the entire universe (9.3 * 1026 meters) is still smaller than the difference in scale between 1 * 1033 and 1 * 1067.  That means that after all that work imagining things, you're still only a tiny fraction of the way there - less than a trillionth of a trillionth of a percent (10-26).
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jdawg70 on September 02, 2013, 09:45:43 AM
Off-topic, but this discussion is making me think of an old article:
http://www.scottaaronson.com/writings/bignumbers.html

I think it gives a good sense of the difficulty in trying to comprehend 'largeness'.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on September 02, 2013, 10:12:56 AM
This place, WWGHA, that constantly digs into the depths of whether a god exists, from every angle we can imagine - may assume that theists dig into and analyze their beliefs in the same way.

I believe many theists are content with the "god is beautiful" level of theism, and merrily go their way throughout life, liking Daniel in the lion's den, Jonah and the whale, Noah,  Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,  Godspell, Jesus Christ Superstar, etc., and are happy with the delusion as they sing, and buy their french fries and cokes.
 
They do not consider the math proof of their position.  It is a happy, surface god belief.  I don't think they get to the level of The Impossibility Argument.

Actually, another one of the reasons I brought this topic up was precisely because I hear this argument from "garden variety" theists all the time (my dad included). "Oh life is just impossible without God..." etc.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on September 02, 2013, 10:22:48 AM
"Oh life is just impossible without God..." etc.

So their god isn't alive? I guess Nietzsche was right.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Mooby on September 02, 2013, 05:36:38 PM
and are just under halfway to understanding how big 1067 is.
Not to rain on your parade, but given that 1036 is a thousand times greater than 1033, wouldn't that be a lot less than halfway to understanding how bit 1067 is?
Halfway to understanding is not to be confused with halfway in magnitude.  Halfway in magnitude is 5 x 1066.  ;)

Quote
I mean, the difference in scale between a human (1.7 * 100 meters) and the entire universe (9.3 * 1026 meters) is still smaller than the difference in scale between 1 * 1033 and 1 * 1067.  That means that after all that work imagining things, you're still only a tiny fraction of the way there - less than a trillionth of a trillionth of a percent (10-26).
Not really, you just have to go up in scale by a factor 1000 for each 3 exponents, or if that's too hard, go up by a factor of 10 for each exponent.  It's only 11 more 1000 scale jumps from 33 to 66 (and then add in a 10 jump.)  So yeah, roughly halfway to understanding.

Of course, I may have chosen the easier half to conceptualize...
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Anfauglir on September 03, 2013, 04:38:24 AM
P1-X phenomena looks intelligently designed

I always stop the argument here with the question "what is there that is NOT intelligently designed?"  IF a god created everything, then there is no basis for comparison.

Only the atheist can look at things and say "that was designed, that was not".  So only an atheist can make this argument - but of course they never would.  So for me, it is flawed right from the get-go.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Hatter23 on September 03, 2013, 07:49:38 AM
It is so often the case that Christians, theists, and religious people in general attempt what I like to call The Impossibility Argument. Basically, the argument goes something like this:

P1-X phenomena looks intelligently designed
P2-If the likeliness of X occurring w/out a designer is very low then it is impossible without an intelligent designer
P3-Complexity and fragility indicate a designer for X
P4-The occurrence of X shows signs of complexity, fragility, and a low likeliness w/out an intelligent designer
C-Therefore, X is impossible without an intelligent designer


This argument is often used in relation to the origin of the universe "from nothing" in cosmology, the alleged "fine tuning" of cosmological constants in our universe, or common descent (evolutionary common ancestry) in biology. I would like to know your response to it. Is it sound? Why or why not?

While on the surface this is an appeal to increduilty, it is also just a buried "special pleading" argument. Who designed the designer?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Boots on September 25, 2013, 01:29:35 PM
This place, WWGHA, that constantly digs into the depths of whether a god exists, from every angle we can imagine - may assume that theists dig into and analyze their beliefs in the same way.

I believe many theists are content with the "god is beautiful" level of theism, and merrily go their way throughout life, liking Daniel in the lion's den, Jonah and the whale, Noah,  Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,  Godspell, Jesus Christ Superstar, etc., and are happy with the delusion as they sing, and buy their french fries and cokes.
 
They do not consider the math proof of their position.  It is a happy, surface god belief.  I don't think they get to the level of The Impossibility Argument.

emphasis added.

I don't think most people realize that JC Superstar is, if not completely, then mostly, about Judas and how he didn't believe Jesus was divine--up to the moment he died.  I love the musical, but it's really a horrible story about a well-intentioned guy thinking his best friend was going away from the message they'd tried to espouse together, and his eventual need to betray said best friend.  "Poor old Judas; so long Judas..."
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: nogodsforme on September 25, 2013, 04:37:55 PM
^^^^Godspell is an incomprehensible hippie mess, esp. if someone is not up on their NT stories. I think a lot of people have no idea what's going on with all the random parables, and strange non sequitors from Jesus. Kinda like the bible itself.[1] But there are a lot of really nice songs. My daughter was just in it. The kids did an incredible job with some very challenging material. 

Jesus, in a very extended and dramatic Evita-like scene, dies in the last scene. (I'm not spoiling the play for anyone, am I?) It is extremely sad and people in the theater always cry at the ending.

I commented to some other people about how wrenching the play's ending was, and one older lady said, "Well the audience needs to learn about what happened, because it's a true story."

Oh well. &)

 1. Similarly, I know I missed a lot of what was going on in Thor, because I don't know very much Norse mythology. Or maybe I was just distracted by this incredibly hot Australian man walking around on screen...
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Aeron on September 27, 2013, 08:39:45 PM
I watched a debate where a theist said that there are numerous plants that are inhabitable so there has to be a god to create this one. I honestly believe they , theist, lack imagination to anything that does not fit into their little circular reasoning. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 19, 2013, 01:15:10 AM
It is so often the case that Christians, theists, and religious people in general attempt what I like to call The Impossibility Argument. Basically, the argument goes something like this:

P1-X phenomena looks intelligently designed
P2-If the likeliness of X occurring w/out a designer is very low then it is impossible without an intelligent designer
P3-Complexity and fragility indicate a designer for X
P4-The occurrence of X shows signs of complexity, fragility, and a low likeliness w/out an intelligent designer
C-Therefore, X is impossible without an intelligent designer


This argument is often used in relation to the origin of the universe "from nothing" in cosmology, the alleged "fine tuning" of cosmological constants in our universe, or common descent (evolutionary common ancestry) in biology. I would like to know your response to it. Is it sound? Why or why not?

I think you make a mistake assuming that anybody who favors the irreducible complexity theory, or intelligent design,  is religious,  or if they are religious, that that they automatically cannot also be scientific and/or logical on any topic.   I think Christians are motivated to believe in intelligent design but they can make non-religious arguments for intelligent design that are logical.    I read the God is Imaginary proofs and they were all logical except for the ones about evolution in which he, or they, appear to  have no skepticism at all.

How do you really dispute the logic that is doesn't seem possible that all these random mutations occurred in such a way to create something useful.  As they argue,  part of an eye is useless,  part of an important cell structure is useless.   Random mutations have no goal yet evolution seems to suggest they can achieve a goal without even having it the first place.   It seems like vision is something that would be have to be thought of in advance of a structure that allows vision.  And this follows billions of times throughout the entire body with various organs and enyzmes and whatever that keeps life viable.  A complex structure like an eye needs all the parts to come together at once and work together,  and evolution can't explain how that happens. 

Now, the God is Imaginary makes the point that if  complexity means there must be a God or a creator, then who created God or creator.     They say this disproves the irreducible complexity argument as regards to life  on earth but does it?      What if something did create the creator of us?   It is only conjecture to assume that nothing could have created something that might have created us. 

I don't think Darwinists have proved their theory anymore than Christians and other religious people have proved there is  a God.   It seems like they conflate natural selection and variation within species with cross species evolution. 

It seems impossible that evolution would result in a man's private parts by random and then female private parts by random and then the sex drive resulted by random chance  and then pregnancy resulted by random chance.    It seems like the plan had to be reproduction from the start for this result to occur.   

Why is reproduction even necessary in terms of survival of the lifeform itself?   It isn't beneficial to the original lifeform from its own survival to produce offspring.   I also have read that the more primitive asexual forms of reproduction are actually more efficient than sexual reproduction in terms of number of offspring so why wouldn't evolution favor that type? 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Anfauglir on October 19, 2013, 03:59:37 AM
It isn't beneficial to the original lifeform from its own survival to produce offspring.   

Welcome to the forum, DrTesla - why do you think that evolutionary theory says that this has to be the case?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 19, 2013, 09:01:04 AM
It isn't beneficial to the original lifeform from its own survival to produce offspring.   

Welcome to the forum, DrTesla - why do you think that evolutionary theory says that this has to be the case?

Thank you for the welcome. 

I don't know what the evolution theory says about that.  I meant that as an implied question more or less.   I don't know how evolution would explain it as I understand evolution and I have the basic high school understanding of evolution, just a real basic overview. At least I think I do. 

I thought natural selection "selected" beneficial traits that would arise through mutations and I could not understand how reproduction was necessary for a specific lifeform's survival in its environment.     I've talked to advocates of evolution about this in the past, some friends and then some people on  a yahoo chatroom,  and I thought they said that reproduction is about survival of the lifeform,  which seems to be conflating survival with reproduction.    But, I guess if the lifeform does not reproduce,  evolution isn't even possible at all  as the lifeform will go extinct.       I don't know....I've always been confused about this aspect.


Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 19, 2013, 09:42:19 AM
I think you make a mistake assuming that anybody who favors the irreducible complexity theory, or intelligent design,  is religious,  or if they are religious, that that they automatically cannot also be scientific and/or logical on any topic.   I think Christians are motivated to believe in intelligent design but they can make non-religious arguments for intelligent design that are logical.    I read the God is Imaginary proofs and they were all logical except for the ones about evolution in which he, or they, appear to  have no skepticism at all.
It isn't that intelligent design is impossible.  It's that it doesn't fit the way humans and other species evolved.  When we design something like a machine (or a computer, or a program), we work to remove defects and improve performance.  But we don't see that with natural evolution.  Humans have a host of problems and inefficiencies that demonstrate a decided lack of intelligent design.  Indeed, our technology is our way to overcome the handicaps of our own bodies.

Quote from: DrTesla
How do you really dispute the logic that is doesn't seem possible that all these random mutations occurred in such a way to create something useful.  As they argue,  part of an eye is useless,  part of an important cell structure is useless.   Random mutations have no goal yet evolution seems to suggest they can achieve a goal without even having it the first place.   It seems like vision is something that would be have to be thought of in advance of a structure that allows vision.  And this follows billions of times throughout the entire body with various organs and enyzmes and whatever that keeps life viable.  A complex structure like an eye needs all the parts to come together at once and work together,  and evolution can't explain how that happens.
This is incorrect.  Evolution works by finding combinations that give an organism a survival/reproductive advantage.  Once such an advantage is created, further changes can then improve it, either by making it more effective (adding functionality), or making it more efficient (reducing unnecessary baggage).  That's how an organ like the eye could have developed naturally; by having successive mutations give it additional functionality (for example, being able to see at night, being able to differentiate colors, being able to resolve see shapes rather than patches of light and dark) and increased efficiency (by removing inefficiencies in the way it developed).

Quote from: DrTesla
Now, the God is Imaginary makes the point that if  complexity means there must be a God or a creator, then who created God or creator.     They say this disproves the irreducible complexity argument as regards to life  on earth but does it?      What if something did create the creator of us?   It is only conjecture to assume that nothing could have created something that might have created us.
This is certainly true, but then you're following an infinite progression.  If creator2 created creator1, what created creator2?  Sure, you can answer that with creator3, but then you have the open question of what created creator3.  There are only three reasonable answers to this dilemma.  First, you have an infinite progression, where you have creatorn creating creatorn-1 and being created by creatorn+1; second, you have no creator; third, you have a loop where something ultimately caused the creation of itself.

Quote from: DrTesla
I don't think Darwinists have proved their theory anymore than Christians and other religious people have proved there is  a God.   It seems like they conflate natural selection and variation within species with cross species evolution.
Do you actually understand evolution?  We aren't talking about a dog eventually evolving into a cat, or a spider into a fish.  We're talking about a precursor organism that differentiated into two or more closely-related species (such as whatever the precursor for primates was).  And this precursor organism would have been much closer in terms of genetics to other precursor organisms, thus creating a divergence between them that would have come from an earlier precursor organism, and so on and so forth.  Naturally, the reality is much more complicated than my example.

Quote from: DrTesla
It seems impossible that evolution would result in a man's private parts by random and then female private parts by random and then the sex drive resulted by random chance  and then pregnancy resulted by random chance.    It seems like the plan had to be reproduction from the start for this result to occur.
No offense, but this clearly demonstrates that you do not understand how evolution works - you are approaching the subject from ignorance, and are claiming that the accumulated knowledge we have on it can't be correct even though you don't really understand it.  Your arguments boil down to, "the eye is too complex, so it must have been designed" and "sexual reproduction can't have happened by accident, it must have been planned", which are both textbook arguments from incredulity.

I am not saying "don't ask questions", I am not saying, "follow blindly".  Questions are good, keeping your eyes open is also good.  But you need to work to educate yourself on something that you don't really understand, not simply declare that it doesn't make sense or that it's impossible.  So your questions should be aimed to help improve your knowledge base, rather than dismissing parts of the knowledge base because they don't make sense to you.

Quote from: DrTesla
Why is reproduction even necessary in terms of survival of the lifeform itself?   It isn't beneficial to the original lifeform from its own survival to produce offspring.   I also have read that the more primitive asexual forms of reproduction are actually more efficient than sexual reproduction in terms of number of offspring so why wouldn't evolution favor that type?
It isn't "necessary", but it gives an evolutionary advantage.  Genetic recombination (from two or more parents) provides a better chance at long-term species survival than simply creating clones, because those clones are going to mostly be copies of the original, and thus vulnerable to a disease, a toxin, or a genetic abnormality.  It's like this; if you have a whole bunch of organisms that are almost all the same, then they'll have the same strengths and weaknesses (mostly).  Look at the way we use antibiotics to kill harmful bacteria, for example.  The only survivors are the ones which had a lucky mutation, since they have no way to recombine their DNA.  So when humans get hit with a disease, you have some which are very vulnerable (say they have two recessive copies of a gene), some which are not very vulnerable (they have one recessive and one dominant), and some which are not vulnerable (they have two dominant copies).  You'll have a lot more humans which are resistant or immune to it than you would if we used asexual reproduction.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 19, 2013, 10:44:24 AM
It isn't that intelligent design is impossible.  It's that it doesn't fit the way humans and other species evolved.  When we design something like a machine (or a computer, or a program), we work to remove defects and improve performance.  But we don't see that with natural evolution.  Humans have a host of problems and inefficiencies that demonstrate a decided lack of intelligent design.  Indeed, our technology is our way to overcome the handicaps of our own bodies. 
    You are basically saying "intelligent design"  did not happen because we evolved via natural selection which ignores the point that irreducible complexity indicates that we didn't evolve that way.   I don't think Intelligent design means Flawless design or Perfect design.  The human body is amazingly complex regardless of the errors that occur and man has never designed anything that comes close to the complexity of the human body so your point about technology seems bit of a red herring.  Moreover,  it is the human brain that permits man to  develop the technology that we use to extend life and improve quality of life.    Even complex machines designed by humans can have flaws and they all break down after awhile.   That does not mean they were not intelligently designed.   


 
Quote from: jaimehlers
  This is incorrect.  Evolution works by finding combinations that give an organism a survival/reproductive advantage.
Once such an advantage is created, further changes can then improve it, either by making it more effective (adding functionality), or making it more efficient (reducing unnecessary baggage).  That's how an organ like the eye could have developed naturally; by having successive mutations give it additional functionality (for example, being able to see at night, being able to differentiate colors, being able to resolve see shapes rather than patches of light and dark) and increased efficiency (by removing inefficiencies in the way it developed).

Most mutations are a disadvantage or neutral, it would seem.   You kind of acknowledge this when you said intelligent design isn't intelligent, meaning flaws exist in people.   I think you are not understanding what irreducible complexity means.  It means a functional complex structure cannot be created in a piecemeal additive way.   The parts have to come together at once and work together.   It also seems to defy the laws of probality that mutations are going to result in a beneficial trait like being able to see at night and then another benefial trait like color differntiaion and so on,   and somehow all these traits work together to give us vision as we know it.   I don't think it is probable that one beneficial trait could have a mutation to lead to another beneficial trait as they have nothing to with each other....one could not serve as the basis for the other because of structural differences.  You are basically arguing that lifeforms must get more complex and efficient over time but it seems like natural selection would be eliminating the negative traits produced by mutations  that impact survival, and thus there would be no real change over time.  If a lifeform can survive without the ability to see color, is a mutation leading to the ability to see color really going to be favored by natural selection?  I would think the lifeform that is color blind could survive at least long enough to reproduce and pass its color blind gene on.  Aren't dogs to this day color blind?    Color blindness in humans is really an genetic error that appears in something more complex. Evolution seems to say color blindness in humans is realy just a primitive form of our vision, not a genetic error that leads to a reduced form of vision.  Does this make sense?  It is hard to explain this.

Quote from: jaimehlers
This is certainly true, but then you're following an infinite progression.  If creator2 created creator1, what created creator2?  Sure, you can answer that with creator3, but then you have the open question of what created creator3.  There are only three reasonable answers to this dilemma.  First, you have an infinite progression, where you have creatorn creating creatorn-1 and being created by creatorn+1; second, you have no creator; third, you have a loop where something ultimately caused the creation of itself. 

Ok, I understand the point that you have here but at the same time I don't think you can argue that irreducible complexity on this plant isn't a problem for the evolution theory simply because of the "hypocrisy"  so to speak in relation to how the "creator" came to be.   The "creator" itself could be some kind of supernatural thing that can not be explained by the laws of nature on this planet so I do think we have to isolate the question of how we originated and the question of how a "creator" came to be.  I am also not saying that it is IMPOSSIBLE that a type of evolution occurred but I don't think it was the result of random mutations and natural selection.   I think this is actually the postion of many of the intelligent design people at the Discovery Institute like that Behe guy who wrote the book about it back in 96 or so. 

]I don't think Darwinists have proved their theory anymore than Christians and other religious people have proved there is  a God.   It seems like they conflate natural selection and variation within species with cross species evolution.[/quote]
Quote from: jaimehlers
Do you actually understand evolution?  We aren't talking about a dog eventually evolving into a cat, or a spider into a fish.  We're talking about a precursor organism that differentiated into two or more closely-related species (such as whatever the precursor for primates was).  And this precursor organism would have been much closer in terms of genetics to other precursor organisms, thus creating a divergence between them that would have come from an earlier precursor organism, and so on and so forth.  Naturally, the reality is much more complicated than my example. 

C'mon man, do you really think that I think a dog evolved into a cat, etc?  I don't think any cross species evolution of any kind has been proven by scientists and I am not talking about big leaps from one species to a completely different species.   It seems like they would have numerous of examples of cross species evolution given they assert evolution has been proven and not just a theory.  Can you list these examples if they exist? 


Quote from: jaimehlers
No offense, but this clearly demonstrates that you do not understand how evolution works - you are approaching the subject from ignorance, and are claiming that the accumulated knowledge we have on it can't be correct even though you don't really understand it.  Your arguments boil down to, "the eye is too complex, so it must have been designed" and "sexual reproduction can't have happened by accident, it must have been planned", which are both textbook arguments from incredulity.
   
Don't we always approach subjects from ignorance and then become less ignorant as we learn stuff?  You are basically just saying you are right and my questions are dumb even though they aren't dumb.  They are logical and if they aren't, you need to show me how they are not logical.  I am not preaching on here and I can be wrong.  I have no dog in the debate...I just find the IC theory to be compelling and a big blow to the evolution theory.  I think most people want to know the truth whatever it is so let us not question that in each other.  My argument does essentially boil down to what you cited there and I think it is logical and you have not proven that isn't a logical argument, as far as I can see.   I think it is amazing that men and women develop these private parts that are compatible with each other and by them getting together results in a baby.  To think this evolved as the result of random mutations seems to defy the laws of probability and logic itself.   It does seem like it has to be the objective of something but again, we don't know everything and maybe there are supernatural processes that science can't explain.  I think we all assume science can explain everything but that isn't something we can prove.  This is kind of confusing.  :) 



Quote from: jaimehlers
  It (reproduction) isn't "necessary", but it gives an evolutionary advantage. 
   This seems like circular logic.  There is no advantage to reproduction as far as a lifeform adapting to its environment.     Morever it doesn't seem probable that a man private parts just developed thru random mutations, as I already discussed.  Again even a man's or woman's sexual organs are complex and one component of it would be useless. 

Think about this, the ability to reproduce has to be present in the very first lifeform on this planet otherwise it would have gone extinct OR that first lifeform had to develop the ability to reproduce during its own lifetime  (which probably wasn't very long)  without it having a genetic basis which seems impossible.  That life itself could occur sponteanously seems like a miracle in itself but to think reproduction was possible in the first lifeform on earth seems like a double miracle.

Quote from: jaimehlers
Genetic recombination (from two or more parents) provides a better chance at long-term species survival than simply creating clones, because those clones are going to mostly be copies of the original, and thus vulnerable to a disease, a toxin, or a genetic abnormality.  It's like this; if you have a whole bunch of organisms that are almost all the same, then they'll have the same strengths and weaknesses (mostly).  Look at the way we use antibiotics to kill harmful bacteria, for example.  The only survivors are the ones which had a lucky mutation, since they have no way to recombine their DNA.  So when humans get hit with a disease, you have some which are very vulnerable (say they have two recessive copies of a gene), some which are not very vulnerable (they have one recessive and one dominant), and some which are not vulnerable (they have two dominant copies).  You'll have a lot more humans which are resistant or immune to it than you would if we used asexual reproduction.
   
This seems like circular logic too.  You are missing my point about reproduction has nothing to do with the original lifeform being able to survive in a given environment.  BUt if we just stipulate that somehow the reproduction is tied to an organisms own survival  in its environment and some mutation occured that resulted in the ability to reproduce (what was the original trait that reproduction could have evolved from, this goes back to my other point about most traits don't have a basis trait it could evolve from), asexual reproduction was easier and took less energy and time and produced more offspring so it seems it seems improable that sexual reproduction would have occurred even though it has advantages that you covered.   I don't see how asexual reproduction could have served as a basis for for sexual reproduction as they could not be more different,  and again, what served as the basis for asexual reproduction. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: nogodsforme on October 19, 2013, 03:21:36 PM
Hi Dr Tesla; awesome moniker, BTW.

As a science nerd, I love this topic. Thanks for giving us another chance to talk about it! You don't have to understand evolution to benefit from it every day.  If you have ever had a flu shot or a blood transfusion or were tested for allergies, or have eaten corn, or had a vaccination, you have benefited from the theory of evolution. Police solve crimes using forensic biology--based on the theory of evolution-- to identify human remains. They locate criminal suspects using DNA--the discovery of DNA is also based on the theory of evolution.[1]

The basics of evolution are not that hard.  All life came from a common ancestor, which is why all living things-- including plants, insects, mammals, birds, fish, reptiles and bacteria-- have  basic similarities at the cellular and molecular level. Every life form alive today came from a previous ancestor.

The closer two species are to each other genetically, the more characteristics they share.  You see it all around you-- most kids look kind of like their biological parents, and closely related species can have offspring (lions and tigers are both a type of cat, and can have offspring--ligers!) while species that are very far apart cannot (dogs and cats, or birds and snakes, can never have offspring).

Humans, gorillas and chimps are all primates who share a common lemur-like ancestor.  The three are too distantly related to have offspring, but are close enough to have similar characteristics in appearance and social organization-- and even to share diseases. When we look at the DNA of different species of primates, it is much more similar than when we compare any primate DNA to canine or feline or reptile DNA. We can even locate the exact places in the DNA where chimps diverged from humans in the evolutionary line.

All of that supports the theory of evolution--TOE. If distantly related species like cats and lizards could produce offspring, that would mean the theory was false. If kids routinely looked nothing like their parents, that would mean the theory was false. Imagine how strange it would be if two dachshunds mated and produced a litter made up of poodles, black labs and collies. An event like that would falsify evolution. If the TOE was false, there would be no way to breed animals with any kind of certainty.

It is a mistake to think that an individual animal or plant or insect "decides" to evolve in one way or another.  Otherwise we humans would have "decided" to evolve wings so we could fly or eyes that could see more of the color spectrum. It is not about individual choice. It is about what makes it possible for an organism to survive long enough to reproduce and pass on its characteristics to its offspring. 

The eye is a great evolutionary example.  A critter that can sense light and dark has an advantage over those that are completely blind. The blind ones get eaten and the more light sensitive ones live and reproduce more. Over time, the light sensitivity becomes more refined until some critters are being born with cells that can detect movement as well as light.

Then some are born with cells that detect colors and distance as well as movement and light. It is not hard to see how various kinds of eyes will evolve from this process. The human eye is not the best, just sort of average--better than dogs and cows, worse than most birds. Eagles can detect rodent movement from thousands of feet in the sky; owls can see mice in a pitch dark night. 

And even then, some animals survive well without seeing, using smell and hearing instead. Bats that live in caves don't use their eyes much and have evolved other senses, like radar. Some fish and moles that live in total darkness can't see at all, but have vestigial eyes that used to see but don't anymore because they don't need them. They live where other animals-- those that rely more on seeing-- can't survive.

So, evolution-- "survival of the fittest"  is not always about being the meanest, fastest, biggest or smartest. Being "fit" is what helps the species survive when something in the environment around them changes.  Plants evolve to resist pesticides, repel insects, survive drought or cold. Some animals are not fast or strong, but they taste bad, or look like they might taste bad. Turtles are not fast, but they have evolved hard shells to protect themselves.

Lots of prey animals are small and quick so they can burrow and hide from predators.  Humans are physically weak, have no protective claws or fur, but have evolved big brains instead to invent tools and make clothes. One bee or ant can't survive very successfully alone, but in groups they do very well. Whales are enormous mammals that evolved from big land animals and now can live in water. We know this because, unlike fish, whales breathe air, have foot bones they don't need, give birth to live young and nurse them with milk.

The discovery of genes reinforced the theory of evolution by showing exactly how similarities pass from parent to offspring. Genetics is about as much proof as science needs that evolution is true. Anytime a person says that "x runs in my family", or looks for a certain breed of dog that is good with children, they are accepting that genetics is real, and they are also accepting the theory of evolution.

There is a bacteria that has evolved the ability to eat plastic!  If that is not good evidence for evolution, I don't know what is.[2]

It would be very simple to prove evolution false: find one organism without the DNA characteristics of its ancestors. Or one example of a species out of evolutionary order, like evidence of primates in the era of dinosaurs. That's it.
 1. A while back we had a religious person here say they could not believe that police solved crimes using evolution, since evolution was not true. I guess they never watch CSI shows.
 2. An intelligent designer would have had to predict the 20th century invention of plastic and somehow imbued bacteria with that ability millions of years ago. And then triggered it to appear right around 2010.....
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 19, 2013, 04:20:32 PM
Morever it doesn't seem probable that a man private parts just developed thru random mutations, as I already discussed. 

Here's a real pic of two real bacteria having carnal relations via a "pilus" through which genetic information is injected from one to the other:

(http://www.sciencephoto.com/image/436618/large/C0115051-Bacterial_conjugation,_SEM-SPL.jpg)
http://www.sciencephoto.com/media/436618/enlarge

That's an intiguing start  ;D  Although be aware these are modern bacteria with a lot of evolution under their belt since we shared a common ancestor with them  :)  So that "pilus" is more likely to be a product of parallel evolution of a similar solution than the actual ancestral penis.

The origin of sex and sexual organs is far from settled but evidence supports the idea that it has been around since our common ancestors were very simple organisms.  EDIT: Long before the penis and the vagina.

This wikipedia page is a nice primer:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_of_sexual_reproduction
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: nogodsforme on October 19, 2013, 05:55:07 PM
Yech. That pic was a nasty thing to see while eating a handful of sunflower seeds.  :P

Anyway, another objection that ID and anti-evolution types bring up is that there are lots of things like love and generosity and kindness and humor and art that they can't imagine could have "just evolved". Like, they think the TOE means that every critter around should just rape, kill and eat the nearest thing that can't get away or do it to the other one first. Always. Immediately.

The world of the TOE should produce gangs of brutish, ugly, uncivilized savages with clumsy weapons and limited communications skills used only to deceive and dominate.[1]

Luckily, social organization is also beneficial to survival of many species, as we see from elephants, primates, ants and bees. In order to promote group survival, they have to live with others, and that requires that certain skills like cooperation and being nice so others want you around. Then others will protect you and share their food with you, promoting species survival.  :)

Scientists have just in the past few decades begun studying canine, dolphin and lower primate behavior and intelligence. The more we study other species, the more we see that human beings are not the only animals who make and use tools, who save for the future, who sacrifice themselves for the group, who give gifts, who play jokes and pranks, who care for the weak and sick, who protect their property, and who mourn loss. Dolphins can even learn to create and perform their own tricks without being taught by a trainer. Look out Cirque du Soleil! Pretty damn smart of that intelligent designer to give dolphins that ability... :?

http://video.pbs.org/video/1778560486/

Animals besides humans even befriend other species, for no apparent reason than fun and  companionship.[2] Either an intelligent designer gave those advanced social characteristics to other animals in addition to humans just to--what, confuse scientists? keep humans humble? give animals stuff to do while waiting for Jesus to come back?-- or these are useful to long-term survival, and can be explained by evolutionary means.  :-\

For example, baby animals in many species look weak, are helpless and make pitiful noises. What encourages parents to care for them and not just brain them in annoyance and eat them? We know that there are chemicals produced in the brain when people are in love, and when women give birth and nurse a child. These hormones encourage people to bond with each other and care for each other, ie to help each other survive and reproduce. Similar hormones exist in other species as well.

One final point about evolution: we see it all the time, everywhere. Not just in special lab experiments.   Every time something reproduces, we are seeing evolution in action because the offspring is just slightly different from the parent, but shares most of the same characteristics. Change at the level of the individual is the evolution we can see in real time--look around the next family gathering and you will see the TOE right in front of you.

Species change, however, often happens too slowly to observe in real time, unless you set up a special lab experiment like the ones with fruit flies. In fact, change at the species level happens so slowly that when the environment changes too quickly, many species cannot adapt fast enough and will become extinct.

Bacteria, insects and rodents mature and reproduce so fast and have such a short life span that they can adapt quickly. They don't go extinct easily--that is why cockroaches, rats and some disease germs will survive global warming. 

Larger species like polar bears, tigers, elephants, whales, dinosaurs and mammoths only have a few offspring in their lives and the babies take years to get old enough to reproduce. (cough humans cough) Others are small but have a very complex social structure or physiology that also requires a stable habitat--like honeybees and frogs. So change the climate a by a few degrees,  or reduce the habitat so the food supply drops at the wrong time of the year, or kill a too few many of the young adults for their fur or ivory, and bingo. No more of that species.... :(

Being buds, creating new stuff, having fun, showing love and caring, reproducing, dying out, all signs of the TOE at work. No need for an intelligent designer. But keep playing. It encourages more evolution research.  ;)
 1. Republicans.
 2. http://channel.nationalgeographic.com/wild/unlikely-animal-friends/galleries/unlikely-animal-friends/at/primate-and-pooch-57268/
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 19, 2013, 06:08:42 PM
Hi Dr Tesla; awesome moniker, BTW.

You don't have to understand evolution to benefit from it every day.  If you have ever had a flu shot or a blood transfusion or were tested for allergies, or have eaten corn, or had a vaccination, you have benefited from the theory of evolution. Police solve crimes using forensic biology--based on the theory of evolution-- to identify human remains. They locate criminal suspects using DNA--the discovery of DNA is also based on the theory of evolution.[1]
 1. A while back we had a religious person here say they could not believe that police solved crimes using evolution, since evolution was not true. I guess they never watch CSI shows.
You are conflating cross species evolution with variation within a species.  Nobody denies  natural selection leads to different variations of a species.   
The discovery of DNA has nothing to do with the theory of evolution.    Police do not use evolution to solve crimes.   They use DNA, other forensic evidence, and cirmcumstantial evidence.   

Quote from: nogodsforme
The basics of evolution are not that hard.  All life came from a common ancestor, which is why all living things-- including plants, insects, mammals, birds, fish, reptiles and bacteria-- have  basic similarities at the cellular and molecular level. Every life form alive today came from a previous ancestor. 
 
Similarity does not rule out intelligent design...you'd actually expect similiarity if there is a designer.   Consider Occam's Razor and look for simple explanations:  Lifeforms look like they were designed because they were designed.
  Plants and bacteria are a good bit different from animals at a cellular level.    Animals aren't engaged in photosynthesis , etc.    Your statements about common ancestors has not been proven and the fossil record indicates  many species came to be at the same time and therefore did not evolve from another. 

Quote from: nogodsforme
The closer two species are to each other genetically, the more characteristics they share.  You see it all around you-- most kids look kind of like their biological parents, and closely related species can have offspring (lions and tigers are both a type of cat, and can have offspring--ligers!) while species that are very far apart cannot (dogs and cats, or birds and snakes, can never have offspring). 
  You are confusing genetics with evolution.  Of course kids tend to favor their parents because they share DNA from both.   This has nothing to do with evolution theory.

Quote from: nogodsforme
  Humans, gorillas and chimps are all primates who share a common lemur-like ancestor.  The three are too distantly related to have offspring, but are close enough to have similar characteristics in appearance and social organization-- and even to share diseases. When we look at the DNA of different species of primates, it is much more similar than when we compare any primate DNA to canine or feline or reptile DNA. We can even locate the exact places in the DNA where chimps diverged from humans in the evolutionary line. 

I don't think that you know enough about DNA to be making these assertions.   My understanding is that DNA does not follow evolution paths but I am also not an expert on DNA so I will have to research this further.  I have looked at some of the arguments surrounding DNA but it is hard to follow if you have no base knowledge in DNA to begin with.



Quote from: nogodsforme
It is a mistake to think that an individual animal or plant or insect "decides" to evolve in one way or another.  Otherwise we humans would have "decided" to evolve wings so we could fly or eyes that could see more of the color spectrum. It is not about individual choice. It is about what makes it possible for an organism to survive long enough to reproduce and pass on its characteristics to its offspring.   
 
I never said a animal decides to evolve.  I've talked about random mutations and chance and probability of higher complexity as the result of random mutations.  This is the exact opposite of "deciding"  something.   I understand what natural selection is, but you don't seem to understand the difference between natural selection  and the theory of evolution. 

Quote from: nogodsforme
The eye is a great evolutionary example. 
  The eye is actually an obstacle to evolutionary theory.  The various parts of the eye must have been created at the same time in such a way that they can work with each,  a partially formed eye is of no use.  It doesn't make sense that an eye would could have evolved piecemeal.  Vision itself seems to be something that must have been conceived of beforehand so that the various parts could be assembled to allow it.   

 
Quote from: nogodsforme
A critter that can sense light and dark has an advantage over those that are completely blind. The blind ones get eaten and the more light sensitive ones live and reproduce more. Over time, the light sensitivity becomes more refined until some critters are being born with cells that can detect movement as well as light. 
   You are just talking about natural selection leading to variation of traits with a species.  This isn't an example of cross species evolution.   Your second statement about eyes that can detect light evolve into eyes that see motion is describing gradual change in the function of the eye of a species, not cross species evolution.   

 
Quote from: nogodsforme
So, evolution-- "survival of the fittest"  is not always about being the meanest, fastest, biggest or smartest. Being "fit" is what helps the species survive when something in the environment around them changes.  Plants evolve to resist pesticides, repel insects, survive drought or cold. Some animals are not fast or strong, but they taste bad, or look like they might taste bad. Turtles are not fast, but they have evolved hard shells to protect themselves. 
These are example  of trait variation with a species due to natural selection....this isn't cross species evolution. 


 
Quote from: nogodsforme
  The discovery of genes reinforced the theory of evolution by showing exactly how similarities pass from parent to offspring. Genetics is about as much proof as science needs that evolution is true. Anytime a person says that "x runs in my family", or looks for a certain breed of dog that is good with children, they are accepting that genetics is real, and they are also accepting the theory of evolution.

Genetics/DNA is not proof of cross species evolution.  DNA is basically a code which implies a programmer.  :)    Your two examples are examples of genetics / DNA,  not evolution.    Evolution is about one species evolving to another.   Not a specific good or bad trait in a given species. 

 
Quote from: nogodsforme
There is a bacteria that has evolved the ability to eat plastic!  If that is not good evidence for evolution, I don't know what is.[2] 
 2. An intelligent designer would have had to predict the 20th century invention of plastic and somehow imbued bacteria with that ability millions of years ago. And then triggered it to appear right around 2010.....
  Again this isn't cross species evolution, you are talking about natural selection within a species and nobody disputes this occurs.  [/quote]   


 
Quote from: nogodsforme
It would be very simple to prove evolution false: find one organism without the DNA characteristics of its ancestors. Or one example of a species out of evolutionary order, like evidence of primates in the era of dinosaurs. That's it.
I think DNA does dispute  evolutionary ties to ancestors.    That is one of the things the intelligent design crowd harps on.    Keep in mind when Darwin forumalated  the evolution theory,  he knew nothing about DNA.       The fossil record does not support evolution as well,    species would pop up  all at the same time
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 19, 2013, 07:45:03 PM
You are basically saying "intelligent design"  did not happen because we evolved via natural selection which ignores the point that irreducible complexity indicates that we didn't evolve that way.
No, I'm saying that intelligent design did not happen because the things we would expect to see of 'design' in organisms - including humans - are not present.  And as for irreducible complexity, all it boils down to is "this is so complex, I can't imagine how it could function with parts missing, thus it must have been designed."  There's no effort to seriously consider any alternatives, such as incremental changes, or to look for flaws in the idea of irreducible complexity to begin with.

Quote from: DrTesla
I don't think Intelligent design means Flawless design or Perfect design.  The human body is amazingly complex regardless of the errors that occur and man has never designed anything that comes close to the complexity of the human body so your point about technology seems bit of a red herring.
I brought up human technology because it is something that we know was designed.  It doesn't matter how complex it might be - the fact of the matter is that even simple tools are superior to the human body for getting various tasks done.  To demonstrate, try cutting paper with a nail versus a pair of scissors, or try pounding a nail in with your fist versus a hammer.  The point is that we can already make tools which are better at getting various tasks done than the human body will ever be, despite the fact that they are far less complicated than the human body.  Can you imagine how effective tools will be once they are within an order of magnitude of the complexity of the human body?  It's a strong argument against humans (or any animals) having been designed.

Quote from: DrTesla
Moreover,  it is the human brain that permits man to  develop the technology that we use to extend life and improve quality of life.    Even complex machines designed by humans can have flaws and they all break down after awhile.   That does not mean they were not intelligently designed.
This is irrelevant, since entropy applies to everything.  As you say, it doesn't prove whether something was intelligently designed or not.  You have to look at other factors.

Quote from: DrTesla
Most mutations are a disadvantage or neutral, it would seem.   You kind of acknowledge this when you said intelligent design isn't intelligent, meaning flaws exist in people.
No, I said that there are no signs of intelligent design in organisms.  Do not put words in my mouth.  You might believe in intelligent design of organisms, but you have not proved it actually happens, so you have no business acting as if it's a given that it did.

Quote from: DrTesla
I think you are not understanding what irreducible complexity means.  It means a functional complex structure cannot be created in a piecemeal additive way.   The parts have to come together at once and work together.
It's because I understand what irreducible complexity means that I consider it so much rubbish.  It's an argument from incredulity, based on the unexamined belief that things that are sufficiently complex cannot work except in their current form.

Quote from: DrTesla
It also seems to defy the laws of probality that mutations are going to result in a beneficial trait like being able to see at night and then another benefial trait like color differntiaion and so on,   and somehow all these traits work together to give us vision as we know it.   I don't think it is probable that one beneficial trait could have a mutation to lead to another beneficial trait as they have nothing to with each other....one could not serve as the basis for the other because of structural differences.
I seriously doubt you understand probability even as well as you do evolution (and you've already admitted that you have, at best, a high school freshman understanding of evolutionary theory).  First off, nobody (except those trying to claim that evolution could not have happened) is saying that you had to have a chain dozens or hundreds of beneficial mutations all at the same time in order for something like the eye to work.  The fact of the matter is that traits that lead to an evolutionary advantage (or that have no effect) tend to be conserved, while traits that lead to a serious enough disadvantage tend to eradicate themselves from the gene pool.

You might review the [wiki]law of large numbers[/wiki] sometime.  It illustrates this very well.  Just as a gambler earns money over time even though a sizable number of people win money from it (because a far greater number lose money), so too would evolution tend to provide for a gradual, incremental improvement in a species even though you have the occasional mutation which either kills its carrier or confers enough of a disadvantage that the organism can't compete well with others of its species.

Quote from: DrTesla
You are basically arguing that lifeforms must get more complex and efficient over time but it seems like natural selection would be eliminating the negative traits produced by mutations  that impact survival, and thus there would be no real change over time.
Incorrect.  Evolution isn't a [wiki]zero-sum[/wiki].  If you have a trait that gets conserved, and another trait that causes its carriers to get wiped out, you don't end up back at the baseline, because the second trait excises itself from the gene pool.  So you end up having a gradual series of changes that tend to improve the baseline over time.

Quote from: DrTesla
If a lifeform can survive without the ability to see color, is a mutation leading to the ability to see color really going to be favored by natural selection?  I would think the lifeform that is color blind could survive at least long enough to reproduce and pass its color blind gene on.  Aren't dogs to this day color blind?    Color blindness in humans is really an genetic error that appears in something more complex. Evolution seems to say color blindness in humans is realy just a primitive form of our vision, not a genetic error that leads to a reduced form of vision.  Does this make sense?  It is hard to explain this.
Something can be disadvantageous without being seriously so.  Color-blindness is only disadvantageous in certain situations, for example, so people with color-blindness tend to survive and reproduce.  Not only that, but there are things which seem disadvantageous, but confer an evolutionary advantage, such as [wiki]sickle-cell anemia[/wiki].  People with sickle-cell anemia tend to die fairly young; the average life expectancy for people with it was in their 40s as little as 20 years ago.  However, it confers a strong resistance to the malaria parasite, which is pretty lethal - hundreds of thousands of deaths a year, mostly concentrated in young children who have no chance to reproduce.  In other words, even though sickle-cell anemia shortens someone's lifespan, it lets them live long enough to reproduce and pass down the gene, whereas malaria tends to kill off people before they can reproduce.

Quote from: DrTesla
Ok, I understand the point that you have here but at the same time I don't think you can argue that irreducible complexity on this plant isn't a problem for the evolution theory simply because of the "hypocrisy"  so to speak in relation to how the "creator" came to be.   The "creator" itself could be some kind of supernatural thing that can not be explained by the laws of nature on this planet so I do think we have to isolate the question of how we originated and the question of how a "creator" came to be.  I am also not saying that it is IMPOSSIBLE that a type of evolution occurred but I don't think it was the result of random mutations and natural selection.   I think this is actually the postion of many of the intelligent design people at the Discovery Institute like that Behe guy who wrote the book about it back in 96 or so.
This is special pleading - you are basically demanding that your belief be given special treatment despite the fact that you can't really support it.  If you can't prove that a creator or designer exists, then there's no reason to assume it does and thus no reason to consider intelligent design as being anything but an unsupported belief which can't be backed up by evidence.  Do you understand?  If there were a creator or designer, whatever, we would see real evidence of it.  You would not have to give it supernatural attributes to explain the lack of evidence.

Quote from: DrTesla
C'mon man, do you really think that I think a dog evolved into a cat, etc?  I don't think any cross species evolution of any kind has been proven by scientists and I am not talking about big leaps from one species to a completely different species.   It seems like they would have numerous of examples of cross species evolution given they assert evolution has been proven and not just a theory.  Can you list these examples if they exist?
It's been proven well enough, considering that the degree of DNA similarity between organisms closely corresponds to where they lie within the taxonomy hierarchy.  That is to say, DNA between two closely-related species is much more similar than DNA between two relatively distant species.  It's exactly as it should be for organisms to have evolved from common ancestors, in other words.

Quote from: DrTesla
Don't we always approach subjects from ignorance and then become less ignorant as we learn stuff?  You are basically just saying you are right and my questions are dumb even though they aren't dumb.
The difference is that most people who are ignorant of a subject don't attempt to claim that their existing knowledge disproves something else (especially if they don't understand the latter).  Your attitude, much like other people who buy into intelligent design, is that ID must be correct because it makes sense to you, even though you don't understand evolution very well at all.  In other words, it isn't the fact that you're ignorant of evolutionary theory, it's the fact that you present something like ID as being more correct than evolution despite your lack of understanding of the latter.

Quote from: DrTesla
They are logical and if they aren't, you need to show me how they are not logical.  I am not preaching on here and I can be wrong.
It's good that you can admit that.  The problem is that your questions are based on the fact that you only really know about ID and not evolution, so you are presenting things that have been rebutted over and over again.

Quote from: DrTesla
I have no dog in the debate...I just find the IC theory to be compelling and a big blow to the evolution theory.
Except, as you've said, you don't really understand evolution well enough to have any real basis for that statement.  The problem with ID is that it's intentionally designed to seem credible to people, like you, who aren't particularly knowledgeable about evolution.   It's always easier to pass along something like ID, which purports to give an easy answer to complicated questions, than to actually learn the more complicated answers that make less assumptions.

Quote from: DrTesla
I think most people want to know the truth whatever it is so let us not question that in each other.  My argument does essentially boil down to what you cited there and I think it is logical and you have not proven that isn't a logical argument, as far as I can see.
With all due respect, logic is often only a way to make a mistake with confidence.  You shouldn't be worried about whether a question is logical, you should be worried about making sure you know enough about the subject to be able to accurately evaluate the questions you're trying to ask.

Quote from: DrTesla
I think it is amazing that men and women develop these private parts that are compatible with each other and by them getting together results in a baby.  To think this evolved as the result of random mutations seems to defy the laws of probability and logic itself.   It does seem like it has to be the objective of something but again, we don't know everything and maybe there are supernatural processes that science can't explain.  I think we all assume science can explain everything but that isn't something we can prove.  This is kind of confusing.  :) 
Except neither probability nor logic really mean anything in this debate.  Talking about the probability of something that's already happened is meaningless, because it became 100% as soon as it happened - and more to the point, the probability of anything happening is going to be fairly low until it actually does happen.  And trying to use logic to disprove something that exists is even more meaningless, because reality always trumps logic.

Honestly, sexual reproduction probably developed from a process similar to the one shown by William - instead of two organisms joining together to exchange genetic material, they join together to give their offspring differentiated genetic material.  And then it just progresses from there.

Quote from: DrTesla
This seems like circular logic.  There is no advantage to reproduction as far as a lifeform adapting to its environment.     Morever it doesn't seem probable that a man private parts just developed thru random mutations, as I already discussed.  Again even a man's or woman's sexual organs are complex and one component of it would be useless.
And what makes you think that human beings just spontaneously developed penises and vaginas?  This is the flaw in your thinking - you're thinking of human beings existing without reproductive equipment and then spontaneously developing it so they can continue the species.  Basically, you're thinking of humans as having been created and then spontaneously developing reproductive equipment through mutations, which is patently ridiculous.  The truth of the matter is that this kind of reproductive equipment has been around for a very, very long time, back to dinosaurs and even before.

I'll honestly admit I don't know exactly when or how sexual differentiation happened, but how it probably started is something really basic, like those two bacteria linking together to share genetic material, except that one, or possibly both of them budded, putting the modified DNA into its daughter organism rather than simply incorporating it into itself.  And then it progressed from there.  So by the time life got to multi-celled organisms that developed distinct organs for different tasks (such as the heart and lungs), reproductive equipment was already present, and modified itself based on the DNA of the organism (in human parlance, XX means you get ovaries, XY means you get testes, and everything else develops from there)

Quote from: DrTesla
Think about this, the ability to reproduce has to be present in the very first lifeform on this planet otherwise it would have gone extinct OR that first lifeform had to develop the ability to reproduce during its own lifetime  (which probably wasn't very long)  without it having a genetic basis which seems impossible.  That life itself could occur sponteanously seems like a miracle in itself but to think reproduction was possible in the first lifeform on earth seems like a double miracle.
Of course it was present.  But it was asexual reproduction - the ability to bud and create a clone of itself.  Indeed, the first life on Earth was probably so simple that it was just a matter of 'infecting' organic matter with RNA-like chemical instructions that created a replica of itself[1]

Quote from: DrTesla
This seems like circular logic too.  You are missing my point about reproduction has nothing to do with the original lifeform being able to survive in a given environment.
No, I'm not.  Without reproduction, there would have been no way for a lifeform to persist beyond its own lifetime.  I wouldn't be surprised to find that lots of these basic lifeforms evolved, but only one of them "figured out" how to reproduce.  It's that one that would have been the ultimate ancestor of all life on Earth.

Quote from: DrTesla
BUt if we just stipulate that somehow the reproduction is tied to an organisms own survival  in its environment and some mutation occured that resulted in the ability to reproduce (what was the original trait that reproduction could have evolved from, this goes back to my other point about most traits don't have a basis trait it could evolve from), asexual reproduction was easier and took less energy and time and produced more offspring so it seems it seems improable that sexual reproduction would have occurred even though it has advantages that you covered.   I don't see how asexual reproduction could have served as a basis for for sexual reproduction as they could not be more different,  and again, what served as the basis for asexual reproduction.
Asexual reproduction was easier, true.  But it just resulted in clones of the original organism, which had the same vulnerabilities as the original, which was an evolutionary disadvantage.  That's why single-celled lifeforms shared genetic material with each other (but even then, they were not that much different).  It is not that much of a leap to go from "two bacteria share genetic information and later bud to create offspring with the revised genes" to "two bacteria share genetic information and bud it off into an offspring of both".
 1. Yes, that means that viruses, or something like them, are probably the first life form to exist on Earth.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: shnozzola on October 19, 2013, 09:21:51 PM
Welcome Dr. Tesla,

                 Here is a way I look at how it all may have started.  Plants get nutrition at the roots by the positive and negative charges of elements.  I believe these positive and negative charges are the way life got started, without a god.  Look at how this natural positive and negative, opposites-attracting thing carries on all through chemistry.   It just took hundreds of thousand of the early years, at millions of places on the planet, with these charges first leading to very basic cells, then basic plants, and then viruses and basic cell differentiation.  It always seems to me that carnivorous plants, such as the Venus fly trap, are a good example of higher plant differentiation.   But the needed key to this whole evolution idea is 4 billion years

Do you believe that a deity dabbles in creation on the planet even now, or set evolution up and then left it go on its own? 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 19, 2013, 11:45:40 PM
Welcome Dr. Tesla,

                 Here is a way I look at how it all may have started.  Plants get nutrition at the roots by the positive and negative charges of elements.  I believe these positive and negative charges are the way life got started, without a god.  Look at how this natural positive and negative, opposites-attracting thing carries on all through chemistry.   It just took hundreds of thousand of the early years, at millions of places on the planet, with these charges first leading to very basic cells, then basic plants, and then viruses and basic cell differentiation.  It always seems to me that carnivorous plants, such as the Venus fly trap, are a good example of higher plant differentiation.   But the needed key to this whole evolution idea is 4 billion years

Do you believe that a deity dabbles in creation on the planet even now, or set evolution up and then left it go on its own?

I have no idea.  I am not claiming to have proof of anything.  I just find the intelligent design arguments against evolution via natural selection to be a logical argument.   But there is more to the intelligent design theory than that and I don't know anything about it or even if they have submitted proof for their theory.   I don't think there is scientific proof of  Darwin evolution or intelligent design but I think intelligent design is more logical. 

I'm not sure if you would even call the "designer" a deity.   I think of it as more of an alien, not a God.  Some kind of weird Star Trek thing.

I don't believe evolution  was set up by a deity because I don't think evolution, at least how Darwin proposed it,  explains complexity in lifeforms. 

I have no idea what the deity is up to these days, if there is one.  It doesn't appear he has been creating new lifeforms in quite awhile.  Humans seem to be the limits on what he could design in terms of complexity, and an intelligent lifeform with self awareness.     I've always found it curious that we are the only lifeforms who can speak and have self awareness and can do things like read or use tools or whatever.   If evolution is true you think there be numerous species who could do these kind of things.   It doesn't seem like people with speech could evolve from animals who could not.    It doesn't seem like self awareness could have evolved thru random mutations in species with no self awareness.   I doubt scientists have any idea how humans have self awareness. 

I could see this diety being some kind of scientist who develops a code, DNA,  that can create various lifeforms and as time goes by he gets better at his craft and more advance lifeforms are created.   Who knows,  the origin of life stuff can blow your mind.   :)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 20, 2013, 04:03:52 AM
Humans seem to be the limits on what he could design in terms of complexity, and an intelligent lifeform with self awareness.     

Humans are certainly NOT the limit of complexity.  We don't have echo location like bats, the electrosensory apparatus of sharks, the power of smell of a bloodhound, the vision of an eagle, the magnetic navigation of a pigeon, the hearing of a moth that can sense bats coming (150 times more sensitive than a human's hearing)  :o .... just to name a few things in nature that leave humans looking pretty ordinary ;)

(http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/02/images/050202_mole.jpg)
Highly sophisticated nose of a star mole.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 20, 2013, 04:46:24 AM
I have no idea.  I am not claiming to have proof of anything.  I just find the intelligent design arguments against evolution via natural selection to be a logical argument.   But there is more to the intelligent design theory than that and I don't know anything about it or even if they have submitted proof for their theory.   I don't think there is scientific proof of  Darwin evolution or intelligent design but I think intelligent design is more logical.

However, as noted already, you do so from a position of scant understanding of evolutionary Theory and by way of a series of discredited-time-and-again ID/creationist arguments.

On the matter of proofs, that is the preserve of mathematics, not science. With scientific endeavours we can infer a great deal by observation and experiment, but the term "proof" is a category error.

With that in mind, on the one hand, we have an established scientific theory that not only explains pretty much everything we observe about living things (to the extent that we can explain them at all) but also has made predictions about what we would expect to find if it were true (for instance, a mechanism by which traits could be passed from parents to offspring, which Watson and Crick finally worked out in the Fifties). Everything from the twin-nested hierarchy to DNA to nylonase to antibiotic-resistant "superbugs" is well explained - even anticipated - by evolutionary Theory and by no competing scientific hypothesis whatsoever. To the point where, if one were approaching the subject with no preconceptions about mystical origins, it would be as perverse to deny evolutionary Theory as it would be to deny atomic theory or cell theory. Which is as near "proof" as one can reasonably get in science.

(Incidentally, DrTesla is flat wrong when he says genetics has nothing to do with evolutionary Theory. It has everything to do with it: it is the mechanism by which traits pass to offspring, which according to evolutionary Theory had to exist if evolutionary Theory was true. That mechanism was predicted by the Theory, was later discovered long after Darwin's death, and vindicates the Theory every bit as much as do the mountains of evidence in the strata - and better still, the genetic code provides further validation of the relationship between organisms and backs up what we find by way of anatomy and paleontology.)

"Intelligent design", on the other hand, doesn't even qualify as a scientific hypothesis. It's entire raison d'etre is to try to poke holes in evolutionary Theory in an effort to discredit it and put in its place a religious construct. IDists have no interest in providing evidence for their "designer" hypothesis, nor in writing any papers describing any processes by which such a "designer" would operate, the principles by which one would predict what a "designer" might do next, in any way that has genuine practical applicability or might lead us to anticipate or seek out future observations in the natural world. It has produced not a single observation, experiment or peer-reviewed journal paper in any reputable publication that sets out to increase our knowledge of the natural world. It is, in essence, an entirely anti-science, destructive force pursued for purely cultural reasons and which relies on promulgating a series of already-discredited arguments amongst the credulous, the ignorant and the uneducated.

You see, ID comes from a mindset that is essentially an idolatrous bastardisation of Christianity whereby they stake everything on the fundamental truth of a collection of works called "the Bible". In their mindset, the words of the Bible are from God, and if even one part of that collection of works is wrong, then God lied. And there is no room for "I don't knows" in a work created by the Creator of all the Universe. Their entire Universe comes crumbling down at that point; if God lied or His knowledge was imperfect, then God cannot be God; if God is not God, then nothing in their Universe makes sense and they have no basis for anything. There is no genuine curiosity about the natural world in such a worldview; everything one needs to know is contained in the Bible, and if any observation one might make in the natural world appears to conflict with their interpretation of the Bible, then it's the observation that is wrong - usually not their interpretation and certainly not the Bible itself. In short, ID is a deliberate attempt at creating an intellectual dead-end.

And for some Christian denominations, which take ridiculous propositions to the Nth degree, it's an understandable kind of survival mechanism: if their followers started getting curious about the natural world, they might start thinking, and if they do that, they might start to question, and then they might start to realise that they'd been sold a pup. And that's the last thing the charlatans and ex-used-car-salesmen who run the crazier churches out there want.

IDists come at scientific propositions and treat them in the same way they approach their own belief-system, without ever realising or acknowledging that in science, even if one were to successfully discredit one datum in favour of evolutionary Theory (and IDists haven't even managed that: where errors have been found, they have generally been found by other scientists, as a consequence of which our understanding of the natural world), that does not suddenly invalidate all the other data in support of the Theory, nor entail that the entire Theory is wrong. Science doesn't work like that. If there were clear observed processes in nature that jarred with evolutionary Theory and which a competing scientific hypothesis explained better as well as explaining everything evolutionary Theory currently explains, which had equal or greater predictive power and applicability, then it would be a contender.

But ID isn't it. ID can;'t explain nylonase, DNA or anything else, except to cherry-pick bits of evolutionary Theory and say "well, we agree with that bit", or to claim that a designer did it. It has no other answers. And "a designer did it" is an intellectual dead-end: it offers no avenues for seeking further knowledge, and IDists are curiously incurious about ascertaining the nature, purpose or attributes of such a "designer" or the mechanism by which it operates. All you get is a nod and a wink and a "well, we don't like to come out and say so, but we're kind of hoping you'll equate 'designer' with 'God'."

As far as ID arguments are concerned (all of which, you'll note, serve no purpose whatsoever except to try, futilely, to poke holes in evolutionary Theory):

Irreducible complexity, as has already been stated, is bunk. Dr. Behe, its chief proponent, was hauled over the coals over this during the Kitzmiller et al. vs. Dover Area School Board trial and as much as admitted that he hadn't read the multitude of books and papers that debunked his hypothesis. (The transcript of that court case is, I'm sure, still available online somewhere. I encourage you to read it, and come back and let us know if you still think ID is the more logical.) Not only is the bacterial flagellum not irreducibly complex, but biologists have identified precursors, and to the extent that "IC" systems may be said to exist in nature, they're arrived at by the way of loss of redundant features that were once required.

Tornado-in-a-junkyard arguments are also bunk, relying as they do on two essential logical fallacies. The first is post-hoc determination of the odds, like the participant in a lottery declaring that it must have been rigged because the odds against a specific person winning was 14m:1 against - no matter that the odds of someone winning quickly approaches 1:1 if you sell enough tickets. The second is a kind of argument from ignorance, combined with a straw man: the proponent of the tornado-in-a-junkyard argument cannot imagine how one could get from simple organic compounds to a strand of nucleic acid by way of gradual processes, so they make up this notion that (a) proponents of natural processes claim that it all happened in one fell swoop (this is a lie; they do not claim this), and (b) the odds against such a thing happening are so staggeringly huge that it can't possibly have happened - or "requires faith" to believe it happened, which is itself interesting as it is such a dazzling display of hypocrisy to claim that "faith", a vaunted virtue in their own credo, suddenly becomes a vice (but that doesn't matter, because this is also a lie).

As for cross-species evolution, this argument is bunk and has been bunk ever since the 1860s. A Crocoduck is not predicted by evolutionary Theory, and never was. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crocoduck) Speciation entails a scenario where two populations diverge to the point where mating between them can no longer take place naturally. It certainly does not entail a scenario where one population "turns into" a population of another extant species. If dogs could turn into cats, that would be a blow to evolutionary Theory, not a support of it. Cats and dogs are two different branches on the "tree of life": no amount of speciation along either branch enables any population group to break away from its existing branch and attach itself to another one. That's not how evolution works; and further, that's not how any biologist claims it works.

Tired, discredited, presumptuous and demonstrably false arguments are not good logical arguments in anyone's book. So are you willing to reconsider your position?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 04:54:20 AM
Humans seem to be the limits on what he could design in terms of complexity, and an intelligent lifeform with self awareness.     

Humans are certainly NOT the limit of complexity.  We don't have echo location like bats, the electrosensory apparatus of sharks, the power of smell of a bloodhound, the vision of an eagle, the magnetic navigation of a pigeon, the hearing of a moth that can sense bats coming (150 times more sensitive than a human's hearing)  :o .... just to name a few things in nature that leave humans looking pretty ordinary ;)

(http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/02/images/050202_mole.jpg)
Highly sophisticated nose of a star mole.

Sure. But I bet none of those animals have ever been stumped by its mate asking "Do I look fat in this?"
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 05:37:23 AM



(Incidentally, DrTesla is flat wrong when he says genetics has nothing to do with evolutionary Theory. It has everything to do with it: it is the mechanism by which traits pass to offspring, which according to evolutionary Theory had to exist if evolutionary Theory was true. That mechanism was predicted by the Theory, was later discovered long after Darwin's death, and vindicates the Theory every bit as much as do the mountains of evidence in the strata - and better still, the genetic code provides further validation of the relationship between organisms and backs up what we find by way of anatomy and paleontology.)


Caveat: I have almost zero scientific understanding. I'm saying this because something struck me about the quoted text, and because you seem very intelligent, courteous and non-patronising.

It doesn't seem very compelling to me that evolutionary theory predicted a mechanism by which traits pass to off-spring. How else could they pass, if not by some mechanism?  Or did the ToE predict what that mechanism was?

Sorry if my question is extremely ignorant.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 20, 2013, 05:53:35 AM
Caveat: I have almost zero scientific understanding. I'm saying this because something struck me about the quoted text, and because you seem very intelligent, courteous and non-patronising.

It doesn't seem very compelling to me that evolutionary theory predicted a mechanism by which traits pass to off-spring. How else could they pass, if not by some mechanism?

It may seem so obvious now, but in 1859 there was no known mechanism for heredity.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 06:12:49 AM
Not the actual mechanism, but surely the fact that there was a mechanism was stating the obvious, even back then?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 20, 2013, 06:52:02 AM
Not the actual mechanism, but surely the fact that there was a mechanism was stating the obvious, even back then?

Was it?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 20, 2013, 06:56:25 AM
Sure. But I bet none of those animals have ever been stumped by its mate asking "Do I look fat in this?"

Awesome proof ... "My ass looks fat, therefore God!"  ;D

Except the concept of being aware of what's a sexy ass isn't unique to humans:

(http://t2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQnwXJsnTWbQZvH8AH8Z0GmWFSkVipFJaejdoAO00o1coUQFNEx)

(http://i713.photobucket.com/albums/ww136/socal1050/Baboon-pink-butt.jpg)

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/a/af/Euplectes_progne_male_South_Africa_cropped.jpg/607px-Euplectes_progne_male_South_Africa_cropped.jpg)

(http://images.nationalgeographic.com/wpf/media-live/photos/000/109/cache/peacock-new-zealand_10933_990x742.jpg)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 07:00:12 AM
Not the actual mechanism, but surely the fact that there was a mechanism was stating the obvious, even back then?

Was it?

I'd have thought so, yes. But I'm willing to be corrected.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 07:01:51 AM
Come on William, fess up: You trawl through the threads looking for opportunities to post cool photos, don't you?

 ;D
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 20, 2013, 07:06:00 AM
^^ Magic, I'm a bit dyslexic (honest) so I do find it easier to express a thought with pics than typing  ;)

And sexual selection is one of the best ways I can think of to illustrate that evolution of complexity is not driven by a higher purpose:

(http://s.ngm.com/2007/07/birds-of-paradise/img/red-bird-615.jpg)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7dx2CUMtZ-0
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 20, 2013, 07:13:53 AM
Not the actual mechanism, but surely the fact that there was a mechanism was stating the obvious, even back then?

Was it?

I'd have thought so, yes. But I'm willing to be corrected.

What may seem obvious to us today is probably not a good basis from which to project what would have been obvious to people in the mid-nineteenth century. It may have been, but the lack of any apparent mechanism still dogged evolutionary Theory until mid-way through the 20th century.

Whether you personally find it compelling is your own affair, of course, but my point remains essentially the same: the mechanism in question had to be there if evolutionary Theory were true, and a "designer" has no need of a mechanism by which to transfer traits that makes it look exactly as if organisms shared a common ancestry, and where the relationships are exactly as are evident elsewhere in nature (in anatomy, and in the fossil record), unless the "designer" in question wanted us to believe that evolutionary Theory were essentially true and that organisms shared a common ancestry. Which raises the question "why would such an entity do so, save to yank our collective chains?"
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Graybeard on October 20, 2013, 07:29:06 AM
You are basically saying "intelligent design"  did not happen because we evolved via natural selection which ignores the point that irreducible complexity indicates that we didn't evolve that way. 

"Intelligent Design" and " irreducible complexity" are garbage. They essentially teach that which is known to be wrong. They are not scientific or logical. They produce more problems than they solve and require a believe in a Creator (Who is always assumed, without proof, to be Yahweh.) who defies time, etc. Strangely, if an atheist were to claim such exemptions from common sense, the godbotherer would jump on him.

The fact that fingernails grow is, essentially, no more complex than the way in which an eye grew.

INTELLIGENT SMITING:

One of the finest and funniest religious alternatives to "ID" is "Intelligent Smiting." In this, God creates all life at Creation but occasionally a creature will displease Him. He then Smites all examples and replaces them with a very slightly improved version. Hence we have a fossil record that apparently shows progress.

I would challenge anyone to prove to me that this is not the One True Explanation. In fact, I will donate $20 to any of Ray Comfort's scams charities if they can persuade me that Intelligent Smiting is not true.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 07:30:26 AM
^^ Magic, I'm a bit dyslexic (honest) so I do find it easier to express a thought with pics than typing  ;)


 :-[

Innocent attempt at humour bites me in the arse. Not for the first time.

You do pretty well then, even if it's partial dyslexia.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 07:37:54 AM
Not the actual mechanism, but surely the fact that there was a mechanism was stating the obvious, even back then?

Was it?

I'd have thought so, yes. But I'm willing to be corrected.

and a "designer" has no need of a mechanism by which to transfer traits that makes it look exactly as if organisms shared a common ancestry, and where the relationships are exactly as are evident elsewhere in nature (in anatomy, and in the fossil record), unless the "designer" in question wanted us to believe that evolutionary Theory were essentially true and that organisms shared a common ancestry. Which raises the question "why would such an entity do so, save to yank our collective chains?"

I've never understood why designer and common ancestry have to be mutually exclusive.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 08:45:47 AM
Humans seem to be the limits on what he could design in terms of complexity, and an intelligent lifeform with self awareness.     

Humans are certainly NOT the limit of complexity.  We don't have echo location like bats, the electrosensory apparatus of sharks, the power of smell of a bloodhound, the vision of an eagle, the magnetic navigation of a pigeon, the hearing of a moth that can sense bats coming (150 times more sensitive than a human's hearing)  :o .... just to name a few things in nature that leave humans looking pretty ordinary ;)

(http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/02/images/050202_mole.jpg)
Highly sophisticated nose of a star mole.

When I see these lifeforms debating the origin of life, you'll have a point.  :)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 09:11:56 AM
I've never understood why designer and common ancestry have to be mutually exclusive.

For a long time that was the position I took (mostly in my head) as well. Why couldn't evolution be the mechanism that "God" used to move species along? This was before I'd met a YEC type of believer - in fact at that point I didn't know there was such a person, much less many of them.

I'm currently taking two biology classes, a happy accident of "goal" requirements that worked in my favor. In one we're covering the uses and applications of plants, current and historic; in the other we're going through cell biology and evolution. Both classes are high level overviews, intended for non-science majors and it's been quite educational to blow the dust off of science I learned almost 30 years ago. There's so much more information to make sense of it's almost overwhelming, even with a professor to guide me. I can almost feel the new neural pathways being created when I make sense of a new piece of information that gathers up a number of random facts into a cohesive whole concept.

I only thought I understood biology and evolution before taking these classes. It's not even that my understanding was wrong so much as very incomplete in light of 30 years of research since I studied it. They've both filled in blanks in my data set that I didn't even realize were there. I'm actually finding it harder now to discuss evolution with theists here who want to argue about it - there's so many incorrect assumptions in their position that we often aren't even discussing the same thing. No disrespect intended to anyone posting in this thread, this is more of a general observation of what happens here so often.

Darwin (and another man named Wallace) are responsible for articulating the theory of natural selection. Natural selection is one mechanism by which evolution can occur. The terms are not interchangeable. They saw a pattern, and explained the process - that's what science is at it's core, an explanation of the evidence available. The scientific method is designed to guard against bias by requiring the questioner to identify whatever information would make their hypothesis wrong - intelligent design ignores any evidence that opposes it's hypothesis.

Once again, I'm reminded that my lack of god beliefs is not because of science, but science certainly has helped me back up my disbelief with better answers.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 09:21:02 AM
When I see these lifeforms debating the origin of life, you'll have a point.  :)

To boldly mangle a  Dr. Dolittle quote, if you could talk to the animals, learn their languages, you might be surprised to discover what they talk about.  ;)

We humans tend to have a very narrow view of what qualifies as intelligence. We're a single species, inhabiting a single planet, in a single solar system, in a single galaxy, in the entirety of the universe. AND we think it all exists for, or because of, us. Pretty egotistical, don't you think? We got that idea out of our own heads by the way, long before we had any clue that other planets exist, much less other solar systems, much less.... you get the point.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 09:22:34 AM
Thanks for the response Jag.

I was more questioning the idea that shared physical traits suggests one common physical ancestor - why can't a creator have created many beings with shared physical traits?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 20, 2013, 09:25:13 AM
When I see these lifeforms debating the origin of life, you'll have a point.  :)

A larger brain space (fossil record shows it evolved) and the invention of writing.  That's not a huge differentiation from apes, some of which have been shown to be faster and more accurate at certain math tasks than humans, and whales who can communicate across vast distances of ocean.

If it were not for writing most humans would have to rediscover and rethink most things afresh. There'd be no books and no google. Just a bit of extragenetic culture - hopefully passed on before the wise ones died (probably 30 - 40 years sooner than now).  We'd loose knowledge very nearly as fast as we could acquire it.

Not all humans are lucky enough to be sufficiently educated (exposed to knowledge accumulated before them by others) to be equipped to debate the origins of life.  If you and I were members of these tribes ...

(http://s2.hubimg.com/u/1207725_f520.jpg)

(http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-7FB7d0RL9bM/Tu-nm8WSXKI/AAAAAAAAALM/dsd8QdmYGQQ/s1600/_11D7952.jpg)

.... our debates would be pretty shallow  :)
 
 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 09:32:38 AM
You are basically saying "intelligent design"  did not happen because we evolved via natural selection which ignores the point that irreducible complexity indicates that we didn't evolve that way. 

"Intelligent Design" and " irreducible complexity" are garbage. They essentially teach that which is known to be wrong. They are not scientific or logical. They produce more problems than they solve and require a believe in a Creator (Who is always assumed, without proof, to be Yahweh.) who defies time, etc. Strangely, if an atheist were to claim such exemptions from common sense, the godbotherer would jump on him.

The fact that fingernails grow is, essentially, no more complex than the way in which an eye grew.

I don't think you can deny that irreducible complexity exists.   It makes sense that complicated things would need the parts to be assembled at once in such a way that they work  for it to have any functionality.   A partially formed structure would have been of no use.   Evolution by natural selection working on random mutations could not have assembled all the parts at once.    It isn't logical that all these random mutations occurred in such a way to achieve something even intelligent people could not design, like an eye for vision.

Evolution can't explain how the first lifeform was created and evolutionist have not proven their theory that life originated on its own in some kind of chemical reaction.   This is actually a key aspect of evolution, that the first lifeform   just came to be due to natural processes.    So to think the first lifeform could have been created,  given we have no evidence life can originate from some kind of random event,  is a legit theory.   And if the first lifeform was created,  why not many more?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 09:37:30 AM
Thanks for the response Jag.

I was more questioning the idea that shared physical traits suggests one common physical ancestor - why can't a creator have created many beings with shared physical traits?

Good to see you back mm. I was thinking about you just a few days ago, and here you are!

I'm struggling to find a way to answer this that doesn't sound sarcastic. My first response is, I guess he could, because as soon as you attribute anything to a creator, anything is possible in theory. Not a satisfying response for either of us.

But a better answer turns the question back to you. Why on earth would one do so? This is where it always breaks down for me - if your hypothesis is right, then that looks like evidence of a creator that is deliberately trying to hide itself from it's creation. Why would it do so? Doesn't that point toward a creator that does not want to be acknowledged if it's going to such lengths to hide it's involvement?

The answers suggested by ToE explain what we've found to date. ID explains that despite all the things that science has provided tangible proof of (see any of nogod's posts on evolution for concrete examples, she's a font of info on this topic) the biblical creation stories are the "real" truth.

Edited to add: we might be talking about ID in different ways. I'm speaking more of the ID religious movement, and I think you are speaking more of your personal beliefs. Clarify?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 09:37:58 AM
When I see these lifeforms debating the origin of life, you'll have a point.  :)

To boldly mangle a  Dr. Dolittle quote, if you could talk to the animals, learn their languages, you might be surprised to discover what they talk about.  ;)

We humans tend to have a very narrow view of what qualifies as intelligence. We're a single species, inhabiting a single planet, in a single solar system, in a single galaxy, in the entirety of the universe. AND we think it all exists for, or because of, us. Pretty egotistical, don't you think? We got that idea out of our own heads by the way, long before we had any clue that other planets exist, much less other solar systems, much less.... you get the point.

Animals communicate with non-verbal communication but humans do that too and it isn't the best way to communicate, especially more complicated thoughts. 

The only way it seems animals could communicate efficiently is if they are telepathic and can read each others minds but that seems unlikely. 

Humans are the only lifeform with self awarnness.   I don't think animals sit around and ponder philosophy and what not.  Animals do have a certain intelligence and they can learn things but no where near the level of humans.   You can only learn so much if you can't read information.   :)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 09:43:23 AM

A larger brain space (fossil record shows it evolved) and the invention of writing.  That's not a huge differentiation from apes, some of which have been shown to be faster and more accurate at certain math tasks than humans, and whales who can communicate across vast distances of ocean.  ...

The fossil record has shown that apes are more accurate at math tasks?  Apes can do math?  C'mon man. ...[/quote]


Quote from: William
  Not all humans are lucky enough to be sufficiently educated (exposed to knowledge accumulated before them by others) to be equipped to debate the origins of life.  If you and I were members of these tribes ...

You are conflating ignorance in humans  with lack of intelligence similar to animals.  These people have no doubt pondered God in on way or another because all humans think about death.   I don't think there is any evidence animals do. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 09:44:16 AM

Good to see you back mm. I was thinking about you just a few days ago, and here you are!


Quesi said the same thing. Hmm.

Double, Double, Toil and Trouble..
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 09:49:13 AM


I don't know what the evolution theory says about that.  I meant that as an implied question more or less.   I don't know how evolution would explain it as I understand evolution and I have the basic high school understanding of evolution, just a real basic overview. At least I think I do. 

I thought natural selection "selected" beneficial traits that would arise through mutations and I could not understand how reproduction was necessary for a specific lifeform's survival in its environment.     I've talked to advocates of evolution about this in the past, some friends and then some people on  a yahoo chatroom,  and I thought they said that reproduction is about survival of the lifeform,  which seems to be conflating survival with reproduction.    But, I guess if the lifeform does not reproduce,  evolution isn't even possible at all  as the lifeform will go extinct.       I don't know....I've always been confused about this aspect.

Why are you arguing about a subject you know nothing about? Get a book about evolution. Don't expect to learn everything from online chat rooms.

Some hints for you. Intelligent Design is a fraud. Irreducible complexity is a fraud. The people who spread this know that it is a fraud. They hope that you know nothing about evolution so they can rope you in. If you don't want to be conned read some books about evolution.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 09:52:06 AM
I think this website has a good summary of some undeniable truths that seem to contradict evolution in an comprehensive way:

http://scienceagainstevolution.info/v12i6f.htm
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 09:53:41 AM
Hi Dr T, and welcome. (Edited to add: this is on reply to post @8:37:58, this topic took off quickly!)

I disagree with a lot of what you posted mostly because we don't share certain assumptions. I contend that intelligence is not the right word for what you are talking about - you are measuring intelligence by what is useful and important for YOU to know to survive and perhaps even thrive in your environment. I would call that knowledge, not intelligence, as it is specific to circumstances. Before you bellow "oh bullsh!t", let me illustrate:

I have all the skills, knowledge, and information to conduct my daily life in the environment I live in. These skills will serve me fine pretty much anywhere in the developed world, interacting with human beings that have similar environments. HOWEVER, those skills, which are central to my survival, are almost useless when taken out of my familiar surroundings. Plop me down in a third world country on my own and I could easily be dead inside of a week. I lack the necessary knowledge to survive in an environment that is so dissimilar to my own - ignore the language barrier, I'm literally too spoiled by my environment to adapt without a great deal of help from people who know useful things that I do not know. They probably lack a formal education but that does not mean they lack intelligence. In these circumstances, the ones that matter to THEIR survival, they are FAR more intelligent than I, despite my assumed educational advantage.

Animals know what they need to know to survive in their environment, some better than others. You can't measure animal intelligence by human standards, the needs being served are not the same, so the knowledge needed is not the same.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 09:54:32 AM
I think this website has a good summary of some undeniable truths that seem to contradict evolution in an comprehensive way:

http://scienceagainstevolution.info/v12i6f.htm

Why are you quoting frauds? Do you like being conned?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: shnozzola on October 20, 2013, 10:01:15 AM
Dr. Tesla,
   I know a little bit about plants, so I'll stick to them, although the eye seems to always create the stir.

   Maybe a poor example, but anyway - there is a weed known as mare's tail, or horseweed.   Roundup was developed in 1974.  For years horseweed was easily killed by Glyphosate (Roundup).  But these days almost all of this weed we now see where there is intensive agriculture is resistant to Roundup. Most of us know how well Roundup works to control common succulent weeds (not so good on trees).  For mare's tail to become resistant so quickly is a good simple example of evolution over a very small time.  Even though it has only become resistant to the chemical glyphosate, this is the step by step advancement of evolution that takes place with seeds receiving the genetic codes necessary to  pass on whatever attribute protects the plant from Roundup.
 

  Let's say in 150 years this weed mare's tail has become a scurge of the world, resistant to every herbicide, requiring physical removal.  IDists could say - see, how could one weed be resistant to all these newly developed chemicals?  It had to be designed.

Edit:  As many of us came from Christian backgrounds and once believed differently, I'm just asking you to keep an open mind.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: naemhni on October 20, 2013, 10:01:21 AM
I don't think you can deny that irreducible complexity exists.

Irreducible complexity does not exist.  The concept is intellectually bankrupt.

Quote
It makes sense that complicated things would need the parts to be assembled at once in such a way that they work  for it to have any functionality.

Just because something "makes sense" to you does not mean it is true.  There are many things that are true that are counterintuitive to common sense.

Quote
A partially formed structure would have been of no use.   Evolution by natural selection working on random mutations could not have assembled all the parts at once.

How the eye evolved has been quite thoroughly documented for many years.  Please do your research before saying things like this.

Quote
It isn't logical that all these random mutations occurred in such a way to achieve something even intelligent people could not design, like an eye for vision.

Seriously?  You don't think that human beings could design an eye?  That's just crazy.

Quote
Evolution can't explain how the first lifeform was created and evolutionist have not proven their theory that life originated on its own in some kind of chemical reaction.

Evolution does not address this question, nor does it claim to.  Evolution explains why and how lifeforms change over time, not how life began -- that is a separate field known as abiogenesis.  That you do not understand this is a clear indication that you know very little about the topic.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 10:01:54 AM


I don't know what the evolution theory says about that.  I meant that as an implied question more or less.   I don't know how evolution would explain it as I understand evolution and I have the basic high school understanding of evolution, just a real basic overview. At least I think I do. 

I thought natural selection "selected" beneficial traits that would arise through mutations and I could not understand how reproduction was necessary for a specific lifeform's survival in its environment.     I've talked to advocates of evolution about this in the past, some friends and then some people on  a yahoo chatroom,  and I thought they said that reproduction is about survival of the lifeform,  which seems to be conflating survival with reproduction.    But, I guess if the lifeform does not reproduce,  evolution isn't even possible at all  as the lifeform will go extinct.       I don't know....I've always been confused about this aspect.

Why are you arguing about a subject you know nothing about? Get a book about evolution. Don't expect to learn everything from online chat rooms.

Some hints for you. Intelligent Design is a fraud. Irreducible complexity is a fraud. The people who spread this know that it is a fraud. They hope that you know nothing about evolution so they can rope you in. If you don't want to be conned read some books about evolution.

Evolutionists have been using frauds for decades, including the famous pepper moth experiment that is probably still in our kiddie's textbooks.   Here is a good summary of some of these fraudulent arguments used and some of the evidence against evolution:   www.discovery.org/articleFiles/PDFs/survivalOfTheFakest.pdf

Many Neo-Darwinists are directly or indirectly admitting they understand IC is something they need to address.  I think Darwin himself saw this as an obstacle.     IC can't be a fraud because we know a partially formed car is not going to function like a car and thus it is useless.   All the parts need to be present at once and able to work with each other for a complex structure / enzyme to have its functionality.    Darwian Evolution suggests things are assembled in a piecemeal and additive way but that can't explain IC.

Books about evolution are generally nothing but propaganda where they don't  prove anything but they speculate all the time.  If you read Darwin himself, you see he speculates and using conjecture throughout.   A lot of "imagine this"  and this "might"  have happened, but that means it might not and probably not. ?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 10:09:13 AM
I don't think you can deny that irreducible complexity exists.

Irreducible complexity does not exist.  The concept is intellectually bankrupt.

Quote
It makes sense that complicated things would need the parts to be assembled at once in such a way that they work  for it to have any functionality.

Just because something "makes sense" to you does not mean it is true.  There are many things that are true that are counterintuitive to common sense.

Quote
A partially formed structure would have been of no use.   Evolution by natural selection working on random mutations could not have assembled all the parts at once.

How the eye evolved has been quite thoroughly documented for many years.  Please do your research before saying things like this.

Quote
It isn't logical that all these random mutations occurred in such a way to achieve something even intelligent people could not design, like an eye for vision.

Seriously?  You don't think that human beings could design an eye?  That's just crazy.

Quote
Evolution can't explain how the first lifeform was created and evolutionist have not proven their theory that life originated on its own in some kind of chemical reaction.

Evolution does not address this question, nor does it claim to.  Evolution explains why and how lifeforms change over time, not how life began -- that is a separate field known as abiogenesis.  That you do not understand this is a clear indication that you know very little about the topic.

I think abiogenesis is part of the evolution theory.  But regardless, my central point holds:  If we cannot prove that life originated as the result of some kind of freak accident in nature, which doesn't seem very likely,  then we can't rule out a "creator" of some sort.   And if the first lifeform was created, why couldn't many more be created?   You don't have to agree with me but I think you do have to concede I have a certain logic here.   :)

Humans can invent something like the eye?   So why are there still blind people? 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 20, 2013, 10:10:12 AM
... all humans think about death.  I don't think there is any evidence animals do.

Think harder.  You've not been out and about much have you? ;D
Prey animals deliberately avoid situations that could result in death.  When they are being attacked you can see the fear on their faces and body language.
Elephants clearly mourn their dead.
Chimps punish some members of their troop by killing them - they don't stop attacking till the offender is dead.

It's quite clear to me many animals know what the difference between life and death is.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 10:11:41 AM
I think this website has a good summary of some undeniable truths that seem to contradict evolution in an comprehensive way:

http://scienceagainstevolution.info/v12i6f.htm

Why are you quoting frauds? Do you like being conned?

Always address the argument.  It doesn't matter who makes the argument if the argument is legit.   I don't know this people at this website but their points seem to be legit.  If  not, tell us why not.   
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 10:13:59 AM
... all humans think about death.  I don't think there is any evidence animals do.

Think harder.  You've not been out and about much have you? ;D
Prey animals deliberately avoid situations that could result in death.  When they are being attacked you can see the fear on their faces and body language.
Elephants clearly mourn their dead.
Chimps punish some members of their troop by killing them - they don't stop attacking till the offender is dead.

It's quite clear to me many animals know what the difference between life and death is.

I think fear and the survival instinct is much different from pondering death and what happens when we die.   Animals may mourn the loss of another that was always around but that doesn't mean they ponder the meaning of life and think about what happens when they die.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 10:17:06 AM


I don't know what the evolution theory says about that.  I meant that as an implied question more or less.   I don't know how evolution would explain it as I understand evolution and I have the basic high school understanding of evolution, just a real basic overview. At least I think I do. 

I thought natural selection "selected" beneficial traits that would arise through mutations and I could not understand how reproduction was necessary for a specific lifeform's survival in its environment.     I've talked to advocates of evolution about this in the past, some friends and then some people on  a yahoo chatroom,  and I thought they said that reproduction is about survival of the lifeform,  which seems to be conflating survival with reproduction.    But, I guess if the lifeform does not reproduce,  evolution isn't even possible at all  as the lifeform will go extinct.       I don't know....I've always been confused about this aspect.

Why are you arguing about a subject you know nothing about? Get a book about evolution. Don't expect to learn everything from online chat rooms.

Some hints for you. Intelligent Design is a fraud. Irreducible complexity is a fraud. The people who spread this know that it is a fraud. They hope that you know nothing about evolution so they can rope you in. If you don't want to be conned read some books about evolution.

Evolutionists have been using frauds for decades, including the famous pepper moth experiment that is probably still in our kiddie's textbooks.   Here is a good summary of some of these fraudulent arguments used and some of the evidence against evolution:   www.discovery.org/articleFiles/PDFs/survivalOfTheFakest.pdf

Many Neo-Darwinists are directly or indirectly admitting they understand IC is something they need to address.  I think Darwin himself saw this as an obstacle.    IC can't be a fraud because we know a partially formed car is not going to function like a car and thus it is useless.  All the parts need to be present at once and able to work with each other for a complex structure / enzyme to have its functionality.    Darwian Evolution suggests things are assembled in a piecemeal and additive way but that can't explain IC.

Books about evolution are generally nothing but propaganda where they don't  prove anything but they speculate all the time.  If you read Darwin himself, you see he speculates and using conjecture throughout.   A lot of "imagine this"  and this "might"  have happened, but that means it might not and probably not. ?

A car is not an animal.

Darwin wrote long before DNA was discovered. He was honest so what do you expect.

Why do you think books about evolution are propaganda? What is the purpose of the propaganda? Why would everyone be independently involved in this propaganda? And most important what are your motives for arguing about a subject you know nothing about?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: naemhni on October 20, 2013, 10:17:48 AM
I think abiogenesis is part of the evolution theory.

No, it isn't.  It's a separate field.  Abiogenesis and evolution have absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with each other.

Quote
But regardless, my central point holds:  If we cannot prove that life originated as the result of some kind of freak accident in nature, which doesn't seem very likely,  then we can't rule out a "creator" of some sort.

Who says that we cannot prove that life originated by naturalistic processes?

Quote
And if the first lifeform was created, why couldn't many more be created?   You don't have to agree with me but I think you do have to concede I have a certain logic here.   :)

Since your premises are unsound, I most certainly do not have to make any such concession.

Quote
Humans can invent something like the eye?   So why are there still blind people?

Because it has only been in recent years that technology and research into pertinent fields has brought us within reach of creating artificial eyes.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Visual_prosthesis

Not being a futurist, I can't say how long it will be before one or more of the fourteen areas of research listed on that page will succeed in creating a bionic eye, but it is going to happen.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 10:19:19 AM
I think this website has a good summary of some undeniable truths that seem to contradict evolution in an comprehensive way:

http://scienceagainstevolution.info/v12i6f.htm

Why are you quoting frauds? Do you like being conned?

Always address the argument.  It doesn't matter who makes the argument if the argument is legit.   I don't know this people at this website but their points seem to be legit.  If  not, tell us why not.

You are making the argument and the issue is why you are arguing about a subject you don't know.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 10:24:26 AM
I think abiogenesis is part of the evolution theory. 
Think what you want, but don't assume that because you think it, it must be true. Abiogenesis is not "part of the evolution theory" as you put it, and your mistake indicates that you are one of the many people who only think you know what you are arguing against.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 10:24:37 AM


I don't know what the evolution theory says about that.  I meant that as an implied question more or less.   I don't know how evolution would explain it as I understand evolution and I have the basic high school understanding of evolution, just a real basic overview. At least I think I do. 

I thought natural selection "selected" beneficial traits that would arise through mutations and I could not understand how reproduction was necessary for a specific lifeform's survival in its environment.     I've talked to advocates of evolution about this in the past, some friends and then some people on  a yahoo chatroom,  and I thought they said that reproduction is about survival of the lifeform,  which seems to be conflating survival with reproduction.    But, I guess if the lifeform does not reproduce,  evolution isn't even possible at all  as the lifeform will go extinct.       I don't know....I've always been confused about this aspect.

Why are you arguing about a subject you know nothing about? Get a book about evolution. Don't expect to learn everything from online chat rooms.

Some hints for you. Intelligent Design is a fraud. Irreducible complexity is a fraud. The people who spread this know that it is a fraud. They hope that you know nothing about evolution so they can rope you in. If you don't want to be conned read some books about evolution.

Evolutionists have been using frauds for decades, including the famous pepper moth experiment that is probably still in our kiddie's textbooks.   Here is a good summary of some of these fraudulent arguments used and some of the evidence against evolution:   www.discovery.org/articleFiles/PDFs/survivalOfTheFakest.pdf

Many Neo-Darwinists are directly or indirectly admitting they understand IC is something they need to address.  I think Darwin himself saw this as an obstacle.    IC can't be a fraud because we know a partially formed car is not going to function like a car and thus it is useless.  All the parts need to be present at once and able to work with each other for a complex structure / enzyme to have its functionality.    Darwian Evolution suggests things are assembled in a piecemeal and additive way but that can't explain IC.

Books about evolution are generally nothing but propaganda where they don't  prove anything but they speculate all the time.  If you read Darwin himself, you see he speculates and using conjecture throughout.   A lot of "imagine this"  and this "might"  have happened, but that means it might not and probably not. ?

A car is not an animal.

Darwin wrote long before DNA was discovered. He was honest so what do you expect.

Why do you think books about evolution are propaganda? What is the purpose of the propaganda? Why would everyone be independently involved in this propaganda? And most important what are your motives for arguing about a subject you know nothing about?

The car thing was an analogy to explain IC in lifeforms.

That is right, Darwin wrote his theory prior to DNA.  To me, it seems like you would have to understand DNA to submit a theory on the origin of life in an ostensibly scientific way.   

For many people,  the evolution vs intelligent design debate is really just a proxy war for atheist vs Christianity.   So there is some propaganda and people wanting their theory to be right to prove or not prove God.      A lot of people really fear the idea of a "creator" and let's face it is a scary concept.   

We need to make sure we are not letting our biases about the existence of a God  prevent us from being open minded on the evolution theory.   You can be an atheist and still think evolution is nonsense. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 20, 2013, 10:26:48 AM
I don't think you can deny that irreducible complexity exists.   It makes sense that complicated things would need the parts to be assembled at once in such a way that they work  for it to have any functionality.   A partially formed structure would have been of no use.   Evolution by natural selection working on random mutations could not have assembled all the parts at once.    It isn't logical that all these random mutations occurred in such a way to achieve something even intelligent people could not design, like an eye for vision.

So what you're saying is that light sensors, for example, in living beings only exist in the form of an eye. You'd be right, if you weren't wrong. Ever seen a sunflower? It doesn't have any eyes, yet it always faces the sun. It has sensors that, while not as advanced as an eye, can still detect sunlight pretty well.

Evolution can't explain how the first lifeform was created
<snip>

You know what? Neither can the theory of gravity. I sure hope we don't all go floating off the planet! The theory of DNA replication can't explain it either! Holy shit!
All kidding aside, the reason evolution can't explain the first life form is simply because it doesn't have to. The theory of evolution concerns itself with life since the moment it first appeared. Not before.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 10:29:18 AM

why can't a creator have created many beings with shared physical traits?




But a better answer turns the question back to you. Why on earth would one do so? This is where it always breaks down for me - if your hypothesis is right, then that looks like evidence of a creator that is deliberately trying to hide itself from it's creation. Why would it do so? Doesn't that point toward a creator that does not want to be acknowledged if it's going to such lengths to hide it's involvement?

Look at it this way: A master craftsman creates a series of fine furniture pieces over, say, a 6 day period.[1] He makes intricately carved chairs, tables, wardrobes, bookshelves, cabinets. The level of design was incredible, each article of furniture unique in its function and appearance. So intricate the design and so varied the features of these fine pieces of furniture that you would seriously struggle to ever look at them and realise that they were all from the one master craftsman. A justifiably proud man, the craftman guards against this threat to his renown by using the same teak in his construction, harvested from the same forest and growing nowhere else. His furniture is now easily recognisable as his.

I can't agree that similarities in all life is evidence of a creator hiding itself. Quite the opposite.


Edited to add: we might be talking about ID in different ways. I'm speaking more of the ID religious movement, and I think you are speaking more of your personal beliefs. Clarify?

Its correct to assume that I am always looking at things from my personal beliefs, which you know well.

Edited to add a bit more context at the start
 1. He was a hard worker. So hard, he really needed a rest the next day.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 10:30:25 AM
Are you conceding our discussion, DrTesla?  Or is it starting to get too busy in this topic?  I would appreciate a response at some point, though.

I don't think you can deny that irreducible complexity exists.   It makes sense that complicated things would need the parts to be assembled at once in such a way that they work  for it to have any functionality.   A partially formed structure would have been of no use.   Evolution by natural selection working on random mutations could not have assembled all the parts at once.    It isn't logical that all these random mutations occurred in such a way to achieve something even intelligent people could not design, like an eye for vision.
Didn't you read my and Deus ex's posts?  We both covered some of the problems with irreducible complexity.  But here, I'll cover another one.  Irreducible complexity is basically a Lego block argument - that you have to put together the pieces a complex organ (like the eye or the flagellum) all at once, and if you take pieces (Lego blocks) out, it won't function.  The problem is, that's based on a faulty understanding of how organs develop and work, and on the false premise that organs have pieces that can be taken out or put together in the first place.

Irreducible complexity is the same as the bad argument that states that if you blew apart an E.coli bacterium into its component molecules, those molecules will have such a ludicrously small chance of coming back together to form an E.coli bacterium that it must have been put together by a designer to begin with.  Except that the only thing demonstrated by this is entropy; it has nothing to do with how the bacterium developed.  Both arguments are made to look logical, but only to people who are not actually knowledgeable about the subject.  In actual point of fact, they're both arguments from incredulity.

Quote from: DrTesla
Evolution can't explain how the first lifeform was created and evolutionist have not proven their theory that life originated on its own in some kind of chemical reaction.   This is actually a key aspect of evolution, that the first lifeform   just came to be due to natural processes.    So to think the first lifeform could have been created,  given we have no evidence life can originate from some kind of random event,  is a legit theory.   And if the first lifeform was created,  why not many more?
Evolution is about how lifeforms differentiate, not about how life came to be.  Claiming that "evolution doesn't explain where life came from" is like claiming that "germ theory doesn't explain where bacteria came from".  To put it bluntly, even if someone did design the very first lifeform on Earth, evolution would still accurately describe how that lifeform differentiated itself and ultimately propagated into the life-forms we observe every day.  If you want theories about where life came from, you need to look outside of evolution, not buy into propagandistic arguments that "evolution requires that life just came to be due to natural processes".  Because it doesn't, it never has, and it never will.

I realize you're not knowledgeable about this subject, and that you want to learn.  That's fine.  But you need to stop assuming you can substitute logic for knowledge.  That's just a form of ignorance, because logic is no better than the premise used to form it.  If you don't have sufficient knowledge about a subject to make an accurate premise, then any logic you develop from your inaccurate premise will also be inaccurate.

For example:
I think this website has a good summary of some undeniable truths that seem to contradict evolution in an comprehensive way:

http://scienceagainstevolution.info/v12i6f.htm
This website is a good example of how it's possible to be logical and blatantly wrong.  For one thing, it claims "Life either originated by purely natural processes, or else some supernatural element must have been involved."  Except that what it means by supernatural is "something we don't understand and that goes beyond nature".  In other words, they're just saying, "we don't know what could have caused it, so it must have been supernatural".  Furthermore, they're also claiming that since scientists have not found a natural process for developing life for more than 50 years, then there's no point in continuing to look, and thus evolution is a dead theory.  This is a horrible approach to science, and it clearly demonstrates that this group isn't interested in scientific discovery.

Their goal is to try to kill evolution, rather than to advance science.  They aren't actually contributing anything in terms of scientific understanding - they're trying to disprove things they personally disagree with by using logic.  Except that doesn't work, and never has; reality always trumps logic and it always will.  That's why scientists do experiments and formulate their theories based on what actually is.  They also use logic, but it's logic paired with knowledge.  If they just did the logic, and didn't have the experiments and observations to back it up, they would be wrong more often than they were right.  Far, far more often.

As for you, DrTesla, instead of looking for websites which seem to support what you already think to be true, you should take the time to learn about what evolution actually is and the evidence that supports it.  Then you can judge the subject for yourself rather than relying on other people's arguments.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 10:30:36 AM
I think abiogenesis is part of the evolution theory. 
Think what you want, but don't assume that because you think it, it must be true. Abiogenesis is not "part of the evolution theory" as you put it, and your mistake indicates that you are one of the many people who only think you know what you are arguing against.

Ok, well it is related, even if it is not officially part of the evolution theory.  I don't think you are going to let me say that we don't have to explain how God was created if we believe there is a God and everything must have been created.   So I don't see why we have to let you off the hook on how the first lifeform evolved from non-life.    We have to hold ourselves to the same standards placed on us by our critics. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 10:32:33 AM
"You can be an atheist and still think evolution is nonsense."

So what?  Not believing in god, and dismissing the ToE only means that this theoretical person doesn't believe in two things. What's your point?

I don't "believe in" evolution because I don't believe in god, I accept what the ToE says because of all the evidence that back it up.

If you still think the theory of evolution is "nonsense" you are not at all up to date on current science. Your not even arguing against the theory, you're trying to argue against what you THINK it says.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: naemhni on October 20, 2013, 10:37:47 AM
I don't see why we have to let you off the hook on how the first lifeform evolved from non-life.

There's no hook to be let off of.  Evolution has to do with how life forms change over time.  It has nothing to do with abiogenesis.  Your use of the phrase "evolved from non-life" is a clear indication that you don't even know what evolution is.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 10:38:39 AM
"You can be an atheist and still think evolution is nonsense."

So what?  Not believing in god, and dismissing the ToE only means that this theoretical person doesn't believe in two things. What's your point?

I don't "believe in" evolution because I don't believe in god, I accept what the ToE says because of all the evidence that back it up.

If you still think the theory of evolution is "nonsense" you are not at all up to date on current science. Your not even arguing against the theory, you're trying to argue against what you THINK it says.

I don't think the fossil records supports evolution at all.  All they do is speculate that because something kind of resembles something else it must have evolved from it.   And we know many species just kind of popped up out of the blue at the same time so doesn't seem like they evolved from anything.

I don't see how you prove evolution,  even Darwinists basically say they know it happened but we can't prove it because it happened in the past and it is a very slow process.   That doesn't sound like science to me.   :)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 10:40:40 AM
Ok, well it is related, even if it is not officially part of the evolution theory. 
What, because you say so? No, it's not. You can say it is all you want to, but that changes nothing. You're supporting my point in previous posts that you don't know what you are arguing against by making statements like this.
Quote
I don't think you are going to let me say that we don't have to explain how God was created if we believe there is a God and everything must have been created.   
I didn't ask you to, not was I intending to do so. I'm quite familiar with that position and would not want to be responsible for dragging it up again.
Quote
So I don't see why we have to let you off the hook on how the first lifeform evolved from non-life.    We have to hold ourselves to the same standards placed on us by our critics.
Wow, you're making this really personal, aren't you? Who is this "we" you are referring to, and why am "I" suddenly on the hook to explain something I haven't even mentioned? I haven't said diddly about what abiogenesis is about, I just pointed out that you are mixing to different things together and not understanding why it doesn't work like you think atheists are claiming it does.
 
Before you go on demanding that I explain things I haven't said, I'd appreciate it if you would address the things I have said that you have ignored.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on October 20, 2013, 10:42:12 AM
Evolutionists have been using frauds for decades, including the famous pepper moth experiment that is probably still in our kiddie's textbooks.   Here is a good summary of some of these fraudulent arguments used and some of the evidence against evolution:   www.discovery.org/articleFiles/PDFs/survivalOfTheFakest.pdf

Wrong. Yes, people writing about peppered moths glued dead ones to trees to show what they were talking about, but that is common in biology, given that it is hard to get living things to hold still. However, science is not done via photos, but via science. And the pictures were an illustration, not evidence. Your guys have made a big deal out of a tiny detail and they refuse to listen to any of the other evidence because, lacking photos to diss, it is too inconvenient.

The peppered moth story remains true, no matter how hard your guys work to make things up that say otherwise.

And the paper you cited is so full of bull that I'm surprised people who read it can still read after going through it. The article is full of misunderstandings, lies, and yes, incredulity. The authors want us to believe that the cambrian explosion was some sort of proof that an intelligent designer suddenly poofed thousands of species into being, because nothing else makes sense, while evolutionary biologists keep reminding folks that the a) evolution moves in spurts, and that the right conditions can cause evolutionary changes to speed up and b) the cambrian period wasn't something that either one of us would consider fast: it took about 30 million years for those otherwise remarkably fast changes to take place. We don't yet know exactly why it happened. We do have a fossil record that shows that it did. If you want to go out and dig up a couple more specimens and prove that a creator did it, be our guest. In the meantime, we'll live with conjecture and keep working on it. Someday we may know much more. In any case, science is finding no evidence of an intelligent designer being involved.

I understand that you have to hang on to these inaccuracies to hold on to your misconceptions and your need to tie evidence in with your beliefs. And until you either give up or come to your senses, you are doomed to repeat the lies of others ad infinitum. Those who study evolution can demonstrate exactly where every theory comes from. Those who dismiss evolution as an uncomfortable derailing of religion can only demonstrate their voluntary ignorance is a limited number of ways. Which is why I can find thousands of discussions on religious sites about the peppered moth, but nothing about the myriad examples of evolution in action, such as schnozzola's horseweed story, because they have yet to find a horse weed glued to a tree, so they got nuttin'.

It would take an incredibly well financed and deliberate conspiracy to produce all the research and scientific papers that support evolution if evolution is a falsehood. Or maybe they are the result of people studying actual evolution.

I'll go with the latter. You do what you want.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 10:43:09 AM
I don't see why we have to let you off the hook on how the first lifeform evolved from non-life.

There's no hook to be let off of.  Evolution has to do with how life forms change over time.  It has nothing to do with abiogenesis.  Your use of the phrase "evolved from non-life" is a clear indication that you don't even know what evolution is.

Evolution does not explain the first lifeform on earth.  If you are saying nothing could be created by some external being, but you cannot explain how the first lifeform arose from non-life, you have not refuted your critics.   

But we are criticizing evolution across the board, not just this aspect.   The observation of Irreducible complexity is criticism that lifeforms become increasingly complex over time as the result natural selection on random mutations.     It doesn't seem probable that random mutations are going to lead to something of high complexity that even very intelligent scientists could not create with a goal of doing so.   That is at least as tough to believe as the existence of God.  Are you now prepared to concede that to me? 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 10:45:19 AM
Ok, well it is related, even if it is not officially part of the evolution theory.  I don't think you are going to let me say that we don't have to explain how God was created if we believe there is a God and everything must have been created.   So I don't see why we have to let you off the hook on how the first lifeform evolved from non-life.    We have to hold ourselves to the same standards placed on us by our critics.
Jag's point is that you don't have to try to explain how life originated in the theory of evolution, because it's outside the scope of that theory.  Naturally, there does need to be a theory to explain the origin of life, but that theory is separate from evolution.  Meaning, if someone disproves that theory, it doesn't affect evolution.

It's the same reason that computer programmers separate their programs into methods rather than just throwing it all together into one long file.  Because if you find an error in a method, you just have to work with one method.  But if you don't have methods, you create a lot more work for yourself, because you have no easy way to find where the error is, and you have to go over the entire program until you do find it.

So, if your concern is the origin of life, don't talk about evolution.  That just confuses the issue, because evolution does not require a specific theory on the origin of life in order to be true.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 10:49:34 AM

The car thing was an analogy to explain IC in lifeforms.

That is right, Darwin wrote his theory prior to DNA.  To me, it seems like you would have to understand DNA to submit a theory on the origin of life in an ostensibly scientific way.   

For many people,  the evolution vs intelligent design debate is really just a proxy war for atheist vs Christianity.   So there is some propaganda and people wanting their theory to be right to prove or not prove God.      A lot of people really fear the idea of a "creator" and let's face it is a scary concept.   

We need to make sure we are not letting our biases about the existence of a God  prevent us from being open minded on the evolution theory.   You can be an atheist and still think evolution is nonsense.


Don't use analogy, I understand the real thing, and so do many others on this site.

Are you just wasting everyone's time? Earlier you said DNA had nothing to do with evolution.

Evolution is not about a proxy war on religion. In Britain where I am all Christians believe in evolution.

You have still not answered why you are arguing about a subject you know nothing about. There is no point in telling you anything about evolution if you are only going to argue about it. What matters here is your motives.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 10:51:00 AM
Speaking of the impossibility argument, its impossibly damn late here, what the hell am I still doing up? Goodnight! Play nice!
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 10:52:04 AM

why can't a creator have created many beings with shared physical traits?




But a better answer turns the question back to you. Why on earth would one do so? This is where it always breaks down for me - if your hypothesis is right, then that looks like evidence of a creator that is deliberately trying to hide itself from it's creation. Why would it do so? Doesn't that point toward a creator that does not want to be acknowledged if it's going to such lengths to hide it's involvement?

Look at it this way: A master craftsman creates a series of fine furniture pieces over, say, a 6 day period.[1] He makes intricately carved chairs, tables, wardrobes, bookshelves, cabinets. The level of design was incredible, each article of furniture unique in its function and appearance. So intricate the design and so varied the features of these fine pieces of furniture that you would seriously struggle to ever look at them and realise that they were all from the one master craftsman. A justifiably proud man, the craftman guards against this threat to his renown by using the same teak in his construction, harvested from the same forest and growing nowhere else. His furniture is now easily recognisable as his.

I can't agree that similarities in all life is evidence of a creator hiding itself. Quite the opposite.


Edited to add: we might be talking about ID in different ways. I'm speaking more of the ID religious movement, and I think you are speaking more of your personal beliefs. Clarify?

Its correct to assume that I am always looking at things from my personal beliefs, which you know well.

Edited to add a bit more context at the start
 1. He was a hard worker. So hard, he really needed a rest the next day.

But this does nothing to explain why it would create the resulting confusion that multiple organisms with similar traits has created. That's the hiding I was referring to - it looks like contradictory evidence. God created everything (I grant that you, thankfully, are not trying to insist that change has not occurred), made little tweaks, improvements and upgrades periodically, then left humans to draw erroneous conclusions that would lead us to decide that God did not exist at all.

The only alternative is "blind faith" and you know my response to that. The absence of evidence is not a reason to accept something as true particularly when all the evidence actually does point to a different answer. If that's god's way, he's a tricky one with much in common with Loki from the Norse tradition, or perhaps Coyote in some Native American ones.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 20, 2013, 10:52:49 AM
DrTesla, I didn't want to do this, but it seems I have no other choice, if I want you to stop wasting everyone's time. Obviously, being a god, I could just smite you out of existence - heck, even wipe out your entire lineage from history - but I won't.
I hereby challenge you to a debate about evolution.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: naemhni on October 20, 2013, 10:53:11 AM
I don't think the fossil records supports evolution at all.

First of all, that's not true, but even if it were, it would make no difference.  The DNA evidence alone is so overwhelming that it would be more than enough to prove that evolution were true even if we had no fossils at all.

Quote
I don't see how you prove evolution

How do you prove gravity?

Quote
even Darwinists basically say they know it happened but we can't prove it because it happened in the past

More proof that you are poorly informed on the subject: evolution did not "happen in the past".  Or, to be more specific, it did happen in the past, but it is also happening in the present; it is continuing today and will continue into the future.

Quote
and it is a very slow process.

So is radioactive decay, at least with some isotopes.  That doesn't mean we can't know it's true.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 10:56:27 AM
Ok, well it is related, even if it is not officially part of the evolution theory.  I don't think you are going to let me say that we don't have to explain how God was created if we believe there is a God and everything must have been created.   So I don't see why we have to let you off the hook on how the first lifeform evolved from non-life.    We have to hold ourselves to the same standards placed on us by our critics.
Jag's point is that you don't have to try to explain how life originated in the theory of evolution, because it's outside the scope of that theory.  Naturally, there does need to be a theory to explain the origin of life, but that theory is separate from evolution.  Meaning, if someone disproves that theory, it doesn't affect evolution.

It's the same reason that computer programmers separate their programs into methods rather than just throwing it all together into one long file.  Because if you find an error in a method, you just have to work with one method.  But if you don't have methods, you create a lot more work for yourself, because you have no easy way to find where the error is, and you have to go over the entire program until you do find it.

So, if your concern is the origin of life, don't talk about evolution.  That just confuses the issue, because evolution does not require a specific theory on the origin of life in order to be true.

All I am saying is if you can't prove that life can originate from non-life in a natural process of some sort,  then you have not ruled out a creator of some sort.   It isn't science to just assume the first lifeform  originated from non-life.   Until you prove otherwise, that did not happen.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: naemhni on October 20, 2013, 10:58:21 AM
Evolution does not explain the first lifeform on earth.

Right, and that's my point: that is not a question that evolution addresses.  "The first life form on earth" is a question for abiogenesis, not evolution.  Why is this so hard for you to understand?

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If you are saying nothing could be created by some external being

I don't see anybody here saying that.  I certainly didn't.

Quote
but you cannot explain how the first lifeform arose from non-life, you have not refuted your critics.

It is a perfectly legitimate answer to say, "We don't know yet, but we're working on it."

Quote
The observation of Irreducible complexity

Irreducible complexity does not exist, so no "observations" about it need to be addressed.

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It doesn't seem probable that random mutations are going to lead to something of high complexity

This is an argument from ignorance, a fallacy that you commit very frequently.  I suggest you read about it and take it to hear so you might avoid committing it again in the future.

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that even very intelligent scientists could not create with a goal of doing so.

There was also a time when "very intelligent scientists" could not create spacecraft capable of carrying man to the moon.  That doesn't mean that it was impossible for them to do so, or that they were stupid, or anything else like that.  It simply means that technology hadn't progressed yet to the point where they were able to do so.

Quote
That is at least as tough to believe as the existence of God.  Are you now prepared to concede that to me?

I'll concede that it's tough for you to believe it, yes.  For me, it's the other way around.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 11:01:20 AM
I don't think the fossil records supports evolution at all. 
When was the last time you looked?
Quote
All they do is speculate that because something kind of resembles something else it must have evolved from it.   And we know many species just kind of popped up out of the blue at the same time so doesn't seem like they evolved from anything.
Wrong. Where did you get this stuff?
Quote
I don't see how you prove evolution,  even Darwinists basically say they know it happened but we can't prove it because it happened in the past and it is a very slow process.   
Complete crap, that.
Please bring me a Darwinist to speak for themselves. I've never met one and in fact am not even certain I could explain what one is - I'd sure appreciate it if you would tell me what a Darwinist is, and provide an example.
Quote
That doesn't sound like science to me.   :)
Of course it doesn't "sound like science" to you. I'll wait for you to produce a Darwinist before trying to explain why that's the case.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 11:06:02 AM
All I am saying is if you can't prove that life can originate from non-life in a natural process of some sort,  then you have not ruled out a creator of some sort.   It isn't science to just assume the first lifeform  originated from non-life.

No, it's really not all you were saying. The ToE doesn't address the origins of life. This discussion would be more productive if you would would quit changing the subject.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Aaron123 on October 20, 2013, 11:07:59 AM
All I am saying is if you can't prove that life can originate from non-life in a natural process of some sort,  then you have not ruled out a creator of some sort.   It isn't science to just assume the first lifeform  originated from non-life.

It's not science to "just assume" a super-being creator of some sort.  You need evidence for that sort of thing.

Even if we did assume a super-being created life on Earth, it just raises further questions.  Where did this being come from?  What created it?  What does it looks like?  Does it have DNA?  Does it reproduce?  Where is (or was) it located?


In short, a super-being wouldn't really answer the question of how life started.  It would only push back the "start date" a little further.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 11:09:40 AM
Evolution does not explain the first lifeform on earth.
Nor will it.  Because evolution isn't about where the first lifeform on Earth came from.  Stop repeating yourself and pay attention.

Quote from: DrTesla
If you are saying nothing could be created by some external being, but you cannot explain how the first lifeform arose from non-life, you have not refuted your critics.
Nobody here is saying that something else could not have created life on Earth.  The fact of the matter is that we don't know for sure how life came to be.  Yet.  That's why we're pursuing such theories as abiogenesis and panspermia.  We also aren't willing to just accept someone's declaration - without any evidence whatsoever - that it had to have been designed.

Quote from: DrTesla
But we are criticizing evolution across the board, not just this aspect.
So what is that, the Royal We?  I'm not just making a snarky joke here.  Unless you're actually working with other people to criticize evolution, it isn't 'we'.  I don't mean just posting their arguments here, I mean actually collaborating with them.

Quote from: DrTesla
The observation of Irreducible complexity is criticism that lifeforms become increasingly complex over time as the result natural selection on random mutations.
Incorrect.  The 'observation' of irreducible complexity is nothing more than an argument from incredulity, a rhetorical and logical fallacy.  It is nothing more than someone saying that since they can't imagine any way for something to have existed in a less complex form and still work, that it must have been designed that way, and that no less-complex forms can have existed.

However, this is disproved by the way things are actually designed.  Haven't you ever heard of computer program version numbers?  Those are successively more complicated versions of computer programs that are nonetheless functional.  As you progress backwards and get to the beta and alpha versions, you get programs that are less and less functional, but that are still actually functional.  So even if your 'designer' existed, it would have started with something simple and worked forwards to more and more complex stuff.  It wouldn't have simply made "eye 1.0", it would have made "eye 0.1.0" and "eye 0.1.1" and "eye 0.1.2", then "eye 0.2.0" and continued working upwards.  In other words, this "irreducible complexity" nonsense doesn't even fly in things that humans actually design.  It's just a fallacious attempt to argue against evolution made by people who don't really understand either evolution or design.

Quote from: DrTesla
It doesn't seem probable that random mutations are going to lead to something of high complexity that even very intelligent scientists could not create with a goal of doing so.   That is at least as tough to believe as the existence of God.  Are you now prepared to concede that to me?
Until you actually understand how probability works, you have no business complaining because "it doesn't seem probable".

I mean, honestly!  You've been criticizing evolution nonstop even though you aren't knowledgeable enough about it to accurately judge whether your criticisms are even valid.  And now you're trying to act as if something being improbable means that it can't have happened, which is just flat-out wrong.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 11:11:26 AM
All I am saying is if you can't prove that life can originate from non-life in a natural process of some sort,  then you have not ruled out a creator of some sort.   It isn't science to just assume the first lifeform  originated from non-life.

No, it's really not all you were saying. The ToE doesn't address the origins of life. This discussion would be more productive if you would would quit changing the subject.

most of my comments have been based on IC and I've talked about the fossil records as well.   I think a conversation can be more productive if we don't limit ourselves to certain topics.   I think evolution is a more valid theory if you guys could prove that the very first lifeform originated through a freak of nature from non-life because then you have essentially ruled out creation in general.     But even if that did happen, Darwinian evolution doesn't really explain irreducible complexity  as the result of random mutations and natural selection so we would have to determine a new evolutionary pathway and mechanism.  Tell me where I am wrong.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 11:15:26 AM
All I am saying is if you can't prove that life can originate from non-life in a natural process of some sort,  then you have not ruled out a creator of some sort.   It isn't science to just assume the first lifeform  originated from non-life.   Until you prove otherwise, that did not happen.
Nobody 'assumes' in the first place, except maybe people who don't agree with evolution so they have an easy target[1].  Evolutionary theory is not predicated on the idea that life had to originate from non-life, no matter what the opponents of evolution claim.

By the way, why should anyone waste their time trying to rule out a creator when nobody can provide actual evidence of this supposed creator to begin with?  The fact of the matter is that science works on positive evidence.  It uses actual observations and actual evidence to make theories.  So if you want people to take your idea about a creator seriously, then find some evidence that shows that just such a creator really existed.  What you cannot do, at least not if you want to be taken seriously, is say, "well, nobody's found a natural explanation, so why don't we just say that some supernatural creator did it?"
 1. This is called a straw man argument, another rhetorical and logical fallacy.  If you claim to care about logic, you should stop using such fallacies.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 11:19:43 AM
All I am saying is if you can't prove that life can originate from non-life in a natural process of some sort,  then you have not ruled out a creator of some sort.   It isn't science to just assume the first lifeform  originated from non-life.   Until you prove otherwise, that did not happen.
Nobody 'assumes' in the first place, except maybe people who don't agree with evolution so they have an easy target[1].  Evolutionary theory is not predicated on the idea that life had to originate from non-life, no matter what the opponents of evolution claim.

By the way, why should anyone waste their time trying to rule out a creator when nobody can provide actual evidence of this supposed creator to begin with?  The fact of the matter is that science works on positive evidence.  It uses actual observations and actual evidence to make theories.  So if you want people to take your idea about a creator seriously, then find some evidence that shows that just such a creator really existed.  What you cannot do, at least not if you want to be taken seriously, is say, "well, nobody's found a natural explanation, so why don't we just say that some supernatural creator did it?"
 1. This is called a straw man argument, another rhetorical and logical fallacy.  If you claim to care about logic, you should stop using such fallacies.

I'm not necessarily trying to prove a creator,  I am just asserting that given Darwin evolution cannot explained IC  PLUS the fact that you have not proven life can originate from non-life in a natural process of some sort  means that you cannot rule out a creator of some sort.   And again, if the very first lifeform was created, then why couldn't more lifeforms have been created, including humans?  That is why you should focus on demonstrating that life can come from non-life in some kind of chemical reaction.    If you think about it, that theory is kind of similar to the plot of Frankestein except Dr Frankensein had a dead body to work with so maybe some advantages in that.   LOL
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 11:24:13 AM
Doesn't the symmetry that you see in lifeforms kind of indicate design and not random chance?

That is why I am fond of applying Occam's Razor to the origin of life, look for simple explanations and if lifeforms look they were designed , it was because they were.  Why is this not a legit way of looking at it? 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 11:28:03 AM
I'm not necessarily trying to prove a creator,  I am just asserting that given Darwin evolution cannot explained IC  PLUS the fact that you have not proven life can originate from non-life in a natural process of some sort  means that you cannot rule out a creator of some sort.   And again, if the very first lifeform was created, then why couldn't more lifeforms have been created, including humans?  That is why you should focus on demonstrating that life can come from non-life in some kind of chemical reaction.    If you think about it, that theory is kind of similar to the plot of Frankestein except Dr Frankensein had a dead body to work with so maybe some advantages in that.   LOL
I just posted why irreducible complexity doesn't work as an explanation for things that humans actually design.  Please don't continue to use it as an argument until you can rebut mine.

I also have no reason to take your "well, if one thing was created, why could other things not have been created too?" argument seriously.  You haven't actually proven that life on Earth was created in the first place, so speculative reasoning about how other life-forms on Earth might have been created if the first one was is meaningless.  The fact is that we don't really know for sure how life on Earth came about - but I will put my trust in the people who are examining the real evidence and perform real experiments to try to find out over any number of people who simply speculate on some supernatural creator who might have done it instead.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 11:29:14 AM
All I am saying is if you can't prove that life can originate from non-life in a natural process of some sort,  then you have not ruled out a creator of some sort.   It isn't science to just assume the first lifeform  originated from non-life.

No, it's really not all you were saying. The ToE doesn't address the origins of life. This discussion would be more productive if you would would quit changing the subject.

most of my comments have been based on IC and I've talked about the fossil records as well.   I think a conversation can be more productive if we don't limit ourselves to certain topics.   I think evolution is a more valid theory if you guys could prove that the very first lifeform originated through a freak of nature from non-life because then you have essentially ruled out creation in general.     But even if that did happen, Darwinian evolution doesn't really explain irreducible complexity  as the result of random mutations and natural selection so we would have to determine a new evolutionary pathway and mechanism.  Tell me where I am wrong.

I'll make you a counter offer. Explain what the ToE actually says. I'll even accept a "cut and paste" from a source that is unbiased and non-religious in nature - in other words I'm looking for you to provide a scientific demonstration that you understand what you are arguing against. Until you can demonstrate that you know what you are arguing against there's no point in trying to "tell you where you are wrong" because so far you are wrong on practically every level.

And for the record, you have largely limited your arguments to natural selection specifically. That's only a portion of the means by which evolution occurs. This rather important snippet of detail is an important one that you seem to be completely unaware of.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 11:30:18 AM
Have you found me a Darwinian to discuss this with yet?  8) You continue to reference these entities without explaining what they are.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 11:31:31 AM
I'm not necessarily trying to prove a creator,  I am just asserting that given Darwin evolution cannot explained IC  PLUS the fact that you have not proven life can originate from non-life in a natural process of some sort  means that you cannot rule out a creator of some sort.   And again, if the very first lifeform was created, then why couldn't more lifeforms have been created, including humans?  That is why you should focus on demonstrating that life can come from non-life in some kind of chemical reaction.    If you think about it, that theory is kind of similar to the plot of Frankestein except Dr Frankensein had a dead body to work with so maybe some advantages in that.   LOL
I just posted why irreducible complexity doesn't work as an explanation for things that humans actually design.  Please don't continue to use it as an argument until you can rebut mine.

I also have no reason to take your "well, if one thing was created, why could other things not have been created too?" argument seriously.  You haven't actually proven that life on Earth was created in the first place, so speculative reasoning about how other life-forms on Earth might have been created if the first one was is meaningless.  The fact is that we don't really know for sure how life on Earth came about - but I will put my trust in the people who are examining the real evidence and perform real experiments to try to find out over any number of people who simply speculate on some supernatural creator who might have done it instead.

It is funny how you think a supernatural creator is crazy but you think life originated from non-life in some kind of freak of nature.  That doesn't sound like something that could have happened within the laws of nature and science.   I think we have to concede that both ideas, that of god and of spontenaous life, are hard to get our heads around.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 11:33:16 AM


I'm not necessarily trying to prove a creator,  I am just asserting that given Darwin evolution cannot explained IC  PLUS the fact that you have not proven life can originate from non-life in a natural process of some sort  means that you cannot rule out a creator of some sort.   And again, if the very first lifeform was created, then why couldn't more lifeforms have been created, including humans?  That is why you should focus on demonstrating that life can come from non-life in some kind of chemical reaction.    If you think about it, that theory is kind of similar to the plot of Frankestein except Dr Frankensein had a dead body to work with so maybe some advantages in that.   LOL

Why are you asserting ANYTHING about a subject which you admitted you know nothing about?

There is no such thing as irreducible complexity.

One above All has challenged you to a debate in the formal debate forum.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 11:35:02 AM
Doesn't the symmetry that you see in lifeforms kind of indicate design and not random chance?
No, because they aren't actually symmetrical even when they seem so.  For example, the right side of the brain and left side of the brain perform different functions.  And there's enough things that aren't symmetrical in organisms that it undercuts the argument.

Quote from: DrTesla
That is why I am fond of applying Occam's Razor to the origin of life, look for simple explanations and if lifeforms look they were designed , it was because they were.  Why is this not a legit way of looking at it?
[wiki]Occam's razor[/wiki] is not about simplicity.  It is about assumptions.  Basically, it reads, "the explanation which makes the fewest number of assumptions is the most likely to be correct".  Thus, simple explanations, especially if they are overly simple, are ruled out by Occam's razor when they make more assumptions than complicated explanations.  For example, "God did it" is the simplest explanation of all, yet it's so full of assumptions that Occam's razor slices it to ribbons.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 11:37:25 AM
It is funny how you think a supernatural creator is crazy but you think life originated from non-life in some kind of freak of nature.  That doesn't sound like something that could have happened within the laws of nature and science.   I think we have to concede that both ideas, that of god and of spontenaous life, are hard to get our heads around.
Did you read my argument about how irreducible complexity doesn't work as an explanation for things that humans actually design?  If you did not, then you should go do it rather than claiming that you know what I think.  Because, to put it bluntly, you don't know what I think and you shouldn't pretend that you do.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 11:38:05 AM
British bacteriologist Alan H. Linton looked for confirmed reports of primary speciation and concluded in 2001: "None exists in the literature claiming that one species has been shown to evolve into another. Bacteria, the simplest form of independent life, are ideal for this kind of study, with generation times of twenty to thirty minutes, and populations achieved after eighteen hours. But throughout 150 years of the science of bacteriology, there is no evidence that one species of bacteria has changed into another."49 - See more at: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2009/05/selection_and_speciation_why_d020411.html#sthash.3F4h34hW.dpuf
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 11:38:38 AM
It is funny how you think a supernatural creator is crazy
... to you, sure.
Quote
but you think life originated from non-life in some kind of freak of nature.
Who said that?
Quote
That doesn't sound like something that could have happened within the laws of nature and science.
Which, so far, you don't seem to understand....
Quote
   I think we have to concede that both ideas, that of god and of spontenaous life, are hard to get our heads around.
Seriously, you should stop with the royal "we".  Just because it's beyond your ability or willingness to grasp what is being said here, that's no excuse to spread it over everyone else.
Edit: formatting
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 11:41:38 AM
See more at:
Not until you address the hanging chads all over this thread first.

If this is supposed to be a reply to my request that you post something that explains what the ToE says, this is not what I asked for.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 11:41:59 AM
Doesn't the symmetry that you see in lifeforms kind of indicate design and not random chance?

That is why I am fond of applying Occam's Razor to the origin of life, look for simple explanations and if lifeforms look they were designed , it was because they were.  Why is this not a legit way of looking at it?

How would life forms look, if they had evolved?

Simple explanations are for simple minds.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 11:50:42 AM
British bacteriologist Alan H. Linton looked for confirmed reports of primary speciation and concluded in 2001: "None exists in the literature claiming that one species has been shown to evolve into another. Bacteria, the simplest form of independent life, are ideal for this kind of study, with generation times of twenty to thirty minutes, and populations achieved after eighteen hours. But throughout 150 years of the science of bacteriology, there is no evidence that one species of bacteria has changed into another."49 - See more at: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2009/05/selection_and_speciation_why_d020411.html#sthash.3F4h34hW.dpuf
So, based on a single scientist's statements (I don't even know if they were peer-reviewed, let alone how accurate they are), you would conclude that he's 'proven' that speciation doesn't happen?

The problem is, science doesn't work like that, and it never has.  It's about finding out information and revising the knowledge base of science based on what we do find out.  A single person failing to find evidence of speciation doesn't mean a whole lot, in and of itself.  That's why we have things like peer review.  Not only that, but him not finding evidence of speciation does not therefore mean that someone must have designed it - that conclusion is based on a false dichotomy, another rhetorical and logical fallacy[1].
 1. for someone who claims to value logic so highly, you sure do use a lot of logical fallacies
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 11:54:04 AM
This guy explains this better than I can:   Darwinist theory requires all the stages from one point to another to be individually "advantageous." In an evolutionary process from A to Z (for instance, from a wingless creature to a winged one), all the "intermediate" stages B, C, D, …V, W, X, and Y along the way have to provide advantages for the living thing in question. Since it is not possible for natural selection and mutation to consciously pick out their targets in advance, the whole theory is based on the hypothesis that living systems can be reduced to discrete traits that can be added on to the organism in small steps, each of which carries some selective advantage. That is why Darwin said, "If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed, which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down."

Given the primitive level of science in the nineteenth century, Darwin may have thought that living things possess a reducible structure. But twentieth century discoveries have shown that many systems and organs in living things cannot be reduced to simplicity. This fact, known as "irreducible complexity," definitively destroys Darwinism, just as Darwin himself feared.

From:  http://harunyahya.com/en/Books/592/darwinism-refuted/chapter/51
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 11:55:24 AM
So are we down to you posting random quotes from people you've found online and ignoring the arguments we make?  That's called preaching, DrTesla, and it's against the rules of the forum.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 11:56:56 AM
Given the primitive level of science in the nineteenth century, Darwin may have thought that living things possess a reducible structure. But twentieth century discoveries have shown that many systems and organs in living things cannot be reduced to simplicity. This fact, known as "irreducible complexity," definitively destroys Darwinism, just as Darwin himself feared.
I already demonstrated that irreducible complexity is not valid when it comes to things that humans actually design.

Now, are you going to answer my argument, or are you going to continue to ignore it?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 11:59:39 AM
British bacteriologist Alan H. Linton looked for confirmed reports of primary speciation and concluded in 2001: "None exists in the literature claiming that one species has been shown to evolve into another. Bacteria, the simplest form of independent life, are ideal for this kind of study, with generation times of twenty to thirty minutes, and populations achieved after eighteen hours. But throughout 150 years of the science of bacteriology, there is no evidence that one species of bacteria has changed into another."49 - See more at: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2009/05/selection_and_speciation_why_d020411.html#sthash.3F4h34hW.dpuf

I read the article. It is just a bunch of fraudsters trying to discredit an experiment which showed speciation did in fact take place.

Why don't you read the original book quoted? Why evolution is true by Coyne.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 12:02:01 PM
Still waiting for you to explain what the ToE actually says.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 20, 2013, 12:04:30 PM
To add to Jag's point: I'm also waiting for you to accept (or decline) my challenge. If you're not sure of your position and don't want to have it thoroughly debunked, I'll accept that. Not responding at all just makes me think you're a coward.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: kaziglu bey on October 20, 2013, 12:06:35 PM
<clipped>
Given the primitive level of science in the nineteenth century, Darwin may have thought that living things possess a reducible structure. But twentieth century discoveries have shown that many systems and organs in living things cannot be reduced to simplicity. This fact, known as "irreducible complexity," definitively destroys Darwinism, just as Darwin himself feared.

From:  http://harunyahya.com/en/Books/592/darwinism-refuted/chapter/51
As Hitch once said to Sean Hannity: "You strike me as someone who has never read any of the arguments against your position ever".

Have you ever tried to actually read any of the books that describe evolution and discuss the mechanisms for it? Or do you just jump straight to the opinions of fringe lunatics and pseudo scientists that back up your already insular worldview?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 12:08:34 PM
So are we down to you posting random quotes from people you've found online and ignoring the arguments we make?  That's called preaching, DrTesla, and it's against the rules of the forum.

It isn't preaching at all.  You guys have been been listed one citation after another on here while I have been essentially talking out loud and trying to explain things myself.   I just thought I wasn't explaining IC very well  because so many people were denying that a system or structure could be irreducibly complex.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 12:09:58 PM
<clipped>
Given the primitive level of science in the nineteenth century, Darwin may have thought that living things possess a reducible structure. But twentieth century discoveries have shown that many systems and organs in living things cannot be reduced to simplicity. This fact, known as "irreducible complexity," definitively destroys Darwinism, just as Darwin himself feared.

From:  http://harunyahya.com/en/Books/592/darwinism-refuted/chapter/51
As Hitch once said to Sean Hannity: "You strike me as someone who has never read any of the arguments against your position ever".

Have you ever tried to actually read any of the books that describe evolution and discuss the mechanisms for it? Or do you just jump straight to the opinions of fringe lunatics and pseudo scientists that back up your already insular worldview?

How many books or websites have you read by the intelligent design crowd  or people who dispute the validity of Darwin evolution?   I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 12:11:21 PM
So are we down to you posting random quotes from people you've found online and ignoring the arguments we make?  That's called preaching, DrTesla, and it's against the rules of the forum.

It isn't preaching at all.  You guys have been been listed one citation after another on here while I have been essentially talking out loud and trying to explain things myself.   I just thought I wasn't explaining IC very well  because so many people were denying that a system or structure could be irreducibly complex.

Amazing, because it just looks like you are dodging questions you can't answer. Including a debate challenge no less.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 20, 2013, 12:11:54 PM
Amazing, because it just looks like you are dodging questions you can't answer. Including a debate challenge no less.

Pathetic, isn't it?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 12:12:36 PM
It isn't preaching at all.  You guys have been been listed one citation after another on here while I have been essentially talking out loud and trying to explain things myself.   I just thought I wasn't explaining IC very well  because so many people were denying that a system or structure could be irreducibly complex.
For crying out loud, I've directed you to an argument I just made in the last hour that shows that irreducible complexity doesn't even work when you talk about things humans designed.  This is the third time I've brought it up, and I've invited you to rebut it.  You've basically ignored it so you can continue to preach about how irreducible complexity destroys evolution, and I'm tired of it.

Either rebut my argument, or recant your own.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 12:12:49 PM
To add to Jag's point: I'm also waiting for you to accept (or decline) my challenge. If you're not sure of your position and don't want to have it thoroughly debunked, I'll accept that. Not responding at all just makes me think you're a coward.

I was reading something to help me explain some things better.   I have obviously responded to most everything posted on here but I am kind of outnumbered at this point so I might miss some things or it will take longer to respond.  I think some of the stuff that is posted, like examples of variation within a species as an example of cross species evolution,  isn't something that I need to respond to because it is self evident that it doesn't prove Darwin evolution theory. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 12:13:06 PM
I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.
For the last time, who are these people you keep referring to as Darwinists and Darwinians?

Edit: you just did it again in the post above - referencing Darwin evolution theory. This tells me again that you don't know what you are arguing against. THERE IS MORE TO THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION THAT NATURAL SELECTION.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 12:15:11 PM
How many books or websites have you read by the intelligent design crowd  or people who dispute the validity of Darwin evolution?   I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.
You can dispute something without understanding it - it's called an argument from ignorance, or argument from incredulity.  You've been doing it basically this entire thread.

Both intelligent design and irreducible complexity are arguments from incredulity.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 20, 2013, 12:16:45 PM
I was reading something to help me explain some things better.   I have obviously responded to most everything posted on here but I am kind of outnumbered at this point so I might miss some things or it will take longer to respond.  I think some of the stuff that is posted, like examples of variation within a species as an example of cross species evolution,  isn't something that I need to respond to because it is self evident that it doesn't prove Darwin evolution theory. 

Being outnumbered is another reason why you should accept my challenge. It will (would) be one-on-one, and I don't think the most reasonable members here would expect you to reply to them, given that you were already engaged in a one-on-one debate on the same topic.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 12:17:47 PM
I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.
For the last time, who are these people you keep referring to as Darwinists and Darwinians?

Edit: you just did it again in the post above - referencing Darwin evolution theory. This tells me again that you don't know what you are arguing against. THERE IS MORE TO THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION THAT NATURAL SELECTION.

Yes, I've acknowledged the mechanism of evolution is both random mutations and natural selection.  What are the additional mechanisms, if any?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 12:18:34 PM
I have obviously responded to most everything posted on here
No, you haven't.  You've missed a lot more than you're realizing.

Quote from: DrTesla
but I am kind of outnumbered at this point so I might miss some things or it will take longer to respond.
I would think you would jump at the chance to have a one-on-one debate with someone if you're feeling outnumbered.  Instead, you've 'missed' his debate request, and the posts by people to remind you of it.  It should not take more than a minute to say, "oh, sure, I'd love to debate you", or "no, I'm not ready to debate you" or something like that.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on October 20, 2013, 12:19:42 PM
You need to understand that the notion of irreducible complexity is as made up as everything else about ID. They have proven nothing, they have only said that things like eyes seem to confusing to them, so eyes can't be true unless designed. Yes, biologists have gone to the trouble of explaining how eyes evolved, even using grade school level explanations in an effort to get their point across, but he ID'ers are content with saying it can't be true without worrying about the evidence. And you are following in their footsteps. Or crawl marks, whichever seems to apply.

You know how to find bad science with google. Try finding some good stuff.

And I notice you don't bring up things like the recurrent laryngeal nerve, which evolved to go around the heart on its way from the brain to the throat. It first existed in fish, then kept the same configuration as some of those fish slowly evolved into other animals. Which means that that nerve, in giraffes, is over 15 feet long. And it only needs to go a few inches. This is an example of evolution not being planned, but rather haphazard. Yet it sort of works. If the eye is intelligently designed, why to humans, and all mammals, have blind spots, while octopi and squid do not?  What sort of intelligent designer gives its creation flaws? Nor does it design in future issues, like cataracts, detached retinas, etc. Unless the designer is a mean old biddy.

Thousand choke to death every year because food and water start their way into the body using the same channel as air, and you are saying an intelligent designer came up with this? Millions have to get their appendix out every year, and not that long ago, appendicitis was a death sentence. And intelligent designer was involved? Thirty percent of the human population suffers from serious back problems at least once in their life, because our backs were designed to be horizontal, not vertical, and they get hurt easily. Tons of problems arise from the fact that our sex organs and our waste disposal system are in such close proximity. Urinary infections in women are often directly caused by sexual activity. Who designed that?

We can't fly. If an intelligent designer built cliffs, he should have also build wings on us so we could survive falling off of them. But nooooo...

Here's a tip from one forum member to another: If you are going to argue against something, be sure you're on the right side to begin with.

If you think you're right, I suggest you go with One Above All's debate challenge, which would make it one on one, not eighty trillion against one. The rest of us just watch. It might be a good idea to consider his challenge/offer.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 12:20:40 PM
I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.
For the last time, who are these people you keep referring to as Darwinists and Darwinians?

Edit: you just did it again in the post above - referencing Darwin evolution theory. This tells me again that you don't know what you are arguing against. THERE IS MORE TO THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION THAT NATURAL SELECTION.

Yes, I've acknowledged the mechanism of evolution is both random mutations and natural selection.  What are the additional mechanisms, if any?

Answer my first question first. I've asked repeatedly and you've ignored it each time. What are you referring to when you say "Darwinian" or "Darwinist" or Darwin evolutionist or whatever?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 12:22:21 PM
How many books or websites have you read by the intelligent design crowd  or people who dispute the validity of Darwin evolution?   I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.
You can dispute something without understanding it - it's called an argument from ignorance, or argument from incredulity.  You've been doing it basically this entire thread.

Both intelligent design and irreducible complexity are arguments from incredulity.

Irreducible complexity isn't an argument, it is an observation of the nature of a system or structure.  Do you deny that a complex structure or system will malfunction if just one part or process is removed? 

 Intelligent design is an argument.   IC is factual observation.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 20, 2013, 12:23:28 PM
If you think you're right, I suggest you go with One Above All's debate challenge, which would make it one on one, not eighty trillion against one.

Well, technically, since I am also known as the All-In-One, it would actually make it near-infinity against one.

The rest of us just watch. It might be a good idea to consider his challenge/offer.

It's a challenge. I did not offer it to save him any trouble, although it does work out that way. I offered it to save the forum members some trouble.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 12:24:10 PM
I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.
For the last time, who are these people you keep referring to as Darwinists and Darwinians?

Edit: you just did it again in the post above - referencing Darwin evolution theory. This tells me again that you don't know what you are arguing against. THERE IS MORE TO THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION THAT NATURAL SELECTION.



Yes, I've acknowledged the mechanism of evolution is both random mutations and natural selection.  What are the additional mechanisms, if any?

Answer my first question first. I've asked repeatedly and you've ignored it each time. What are you referring to when you say "Darwinian" or "Darwinist" or Darwin evolutionist or whatever?

I essentially mean people who accept Darwin's theory and the modifications to it since Darwin.   What is your definition? 

I'd rather not get into semantics on every post because that is a debate trick used by some.  I think people understand who I mean when I say that.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: kaziglu bey on October 20, 2013, 12:25:07 PM
How many books or websites have you read by the intelligent design crowd  or people who dispute the validity of Darwin evolution?   I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.

I'll take that as "I haven't bothered to actually study the arguments that proponents of evolution make".

I have actually spent a lot of time and effort educating myself as to the position of people such as yourself, and even recently went to a presentation called "I don't have enough faith to be an atheist" by Frank Turek.

Just from Richard Dawkins I could recommend "Climbing Mount Improbable", "The Selfish Gene", "The Blind Watchmaker" and "The Greatest Show on Earth". Once you see how elegant, persuasive, and awe inspiring the evidence for evolution is, you will kick yourself for ever thinking "God did it" was a good explanation. Hell, my then 8 year old son, while looking through a book about prehistoric mammals, was able to note the similarities, and differences, between the early hominid species and describe their gradual change from more ape-like to more person-like. The question then becomes, are you smarter than a third grader?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 12:29:13 PM
How many books or websites have you read by the intelligent design crowd  or people who dispute the validity of Darwin evolution?   I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.

I'll take that as "I haven't bothered to actually study the arguments that proponents of evolution make".

I have actually spent a lot of time and effort educating myself as to the position of people such as yourself, and even recently went to a presentation called "I don't have enough faith to be an atheist" by Frank Turek.

Just from Richard Dawkins I could recommend "Climbing Mount Improbable", "The Selfish Gene", "The Blind Watchmaker" and "The Greatest Show on Earth". Once you see how elegant, persuasive, and awe inspiring the evidence for evolution is, you will kick yourself for ever thinking "God did it" was a good explanation. Hell, my then 8 year old son, while looking through a book about prehistoric mammals, was able to note the similarities, and differences, between the early hominid species and describe their gradual change from more ape-like to more person-like. The question then becomes, are you smarter than a third grader?

My argument isn't "God did it",  it is natural selection and random mutations don't account for irreducible complexity so maybe there is a creator of some sort, maybe there is another evolutionary pathway that does not involve random mutations and natural selection,  maybe there is another natural process that we have not uncovered that explains it.   This demonstrates that I am open minded and not a zealot or ideologue on this issue.   

I did get into how the first lifeform originated to make the point that we can not rule out a "God" because nobody has proven life can originate from non-life via a natural process of some sort.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 12:32:20 PM
I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.
For the last time, who are these people you keep referring to as Darwinists and Darwinians?

Edit: you just did it again in the post above - referencing Darwin evolution theory. This tells me again that you don't know what you are arguing against. THERE IS MORE TO THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION THAT NATURAL SELECTION.



Yes, I've acknowledged the mechanism of evolution is both random mutations and natural selection.  What are the additional mechanisms, if any?

Answer my first question first. I've asked repeatedly and you've ignored it each time. What are you referring to when you say "Darwinian" or "Darwinist" or Darwin evolutionist or whatever?

I essentially mean people who accept Darwin's theory and the modifications to it since Darwin.   What is your definition? 

I'd rather not get into semantics on every post because that is a debate trick used by some.  I think people understand who I mean when I say that.

Oh, my apologies for not being sure of your made up definition and expecting you to provide one. What on earth could I have been thinking?

I don't have a definition because I would never use that term. That's why I asked for yours, since you introduced the term to the discussion. If you want to avoid semantic debate, use terms as intended and supply a definition if you are asked for one.

Now I also asked you to provide me with one such person to discuss this with - good on you for detecting the sarcasm. You've more or less created a fake persona to argue against, thus my request that you produce one.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 12:35:49 PM
I think people understand who I mean when I say that.

HA! I'm a communications major, and that assumption you just made is the root cause of a significant portion of all disagreements - people making assumptions that others understand things they don't actually understand. Damn straight I'm going to expect you to say what you mean, and mean what you say.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 12:38:56 PM
Irreducible complexity isn't an argument, it is an observation of the nature of a system or structure.  Do you deny that a complex structure or system will malfunction if just one part or process is removed?

 Intelligent design is an argument.   IC is factual observation.
If this is how you want to play it...

An observation can be a fallacy, and therefore wrong.  You need to support your claim that it is factual, and so far you have totally failed to do so.

My argument earlier shows that it is not something that is observed in things that humans design (and by extension, cannot be used to support an argument, such as intelligent design).  So you either need to rebut my argument, or recant your claim that it is a factual observation.

EDIT--By the way, I am quite aware of your 'gotcha' question.  I know good and well that some things that people make won't work if you take pieces off.  It is your assumption (and yes, it is an assumption) that biology works the same way.  The only thing you actually show when you make this assumption is that you don't understand biology or evolution.

Really, the problem here is that irreducible complexity is a concept made up by people who oppose evolution, and given a science-sounding name so as to make people think that it's scientific.  But what it actually is, is a fallacy - the 'observation' that something is so complex that it must have been designed/made.  Which is textbook incredulity.  Claiming that it isn't a fallacy because it's an 'observation' and not an 'argument' is meaningless semantics.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 12:40:29 PM
How many books or websites have you read by the intelligent design crowd  or people who dispute the validity of Darwin evolution?   I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.
You can dispute something without understanding it - it's called an argument from ignorance, or argument from incredulity.  You've been doing it basically this entire thread.

Both intelligent design and irreducible complexity are arguments from incredulity.

Irreducible complexity isn't an argument, it is an observation of the nature of a system or structure.  Do you deny that a complex structure or system will malfunction if just one part or process is removed? 

 Intelligent design is an argument.   IC is factual observation.

Do you accept that you are talking about how an animal works today? Not how it evolved?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 12:41:56 PM
I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.
For the last time, who are these people you keep referring to as Darwinists and Darwinians?

Edit: you just did it again in the post above - referencing Darwin evolution theory. This tells me again that you don't know what you are arguing against. THERE IS MORE TO THE THEORY OF EVOLUTION THAT NATURAL SELECTION.



Yes, I've acknowledged the mechanism of evolution is both random mutations and natural selection.  What are the additional mechanisms, if any?

Answer my first question first. I've asked repeatedly and you've ignored it each time. What are you referring to when you say "Darwinian" or "Darwinist" or Darwin evolutionist or whatever?

I essentially mean people who accept Darwin's theory and the modifications to it since Darwin.   What is your definition? 

I'd rather not get into semantics on every post because that is a debate trick used by some.  I think people understand who I mean when I say that.

Oh, my apologies for not being sure of your made up definition and expecting you to provide one. What on earth could I have been thinking?

I don't have a definition because I would never use that term. That's why I asked for yours, since you introduced the term to the discussion. If you want to avoid semantic debate, use terms as intended and supply a definition if you are asked for one.

Now I also asked you to provide me with one such person to discuss this with - good on you for detecting the sarcasm. You've more or less created a fake persona to argue against, thus my request that you produce one.

You insisted that I define something for you.  I did.  I asked you to define the same thing as you see it.  You say you wouldn't use that term.   But it is what it is regardless of what term.  There are people who are advocates of Darwin's beliefs.   You must call them something, it would seem.  Who else could I be talking about?   

What is this if not a semantics debate trick?    I'd rather focus on the empirical data and logical arguments for or against irreducible complexity which I thought was the topic of this thread. 

I only want to know the truth and I am in a relentless pursuit of the truth and therefore I must be open minded to all possibilities that have not been ruled out given none has been proven.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 12:46:18 PM
How many books or websites have you read by the intelligent design crowd  or people who dispute the validity of Darwin evolution?   I do understand the basic arguments Darwin people make because I am disputing them.
You can dispute something without understanding it - it's called an argument from ignorance, or argument from incredulity.  You've been doing it basically this entire thread.

Both intelligent design and irreducible complexity are arguments from incredulity.

I think you are missing the point.   The structure or system with irreducible complexity must have evolved to that state if Darwin evolution theory is valid.  Therefore,  it follows if the complex structure of system can not be reduced to parts that could have sequentially been added upon to form the final complex system or structure,  that evolution did not occur.    If I am wrong, walk me thru your logic.   I do not wish to be wrong and I have been wrong on things in the past.  I don't not fear being ignorant but I can only learn when somebody logically shows me I am wrong.

Irreducible complexity isn't an argument, it is an observation of the nature of a system or structure.  Do you deny that a complex structure or system will malfunction if just one part or process is removed? 

 Intelligent design is an argument.   IC is factual observation.

Do you accept that you are talking about how an animal works today? Not how it evolved?

I think you are missing the point.   The structure or system with irreducible complexity must have evolved from more simple structures with added functionality in a piecemeal and sequential manner to that complex state if Darwin evolution theory is valid.  Therefore,  it follows if the complex structure of system can not be reduced to parts that could have sequentially been added upon to form the final complex system or structure,  then evolution did not occur.    If I am wrong, walk me thru your logic.   I do not wish to be wrong and I have been wrong on things in the past.  I don't not fear being ignorant but I can only learn when somebody logically shows me I am wrong.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 12:53:17 PM
Quote
You insisted that I define something for you.  I did.  I asked you to define the same thing as you see it.  You say you wouldn't use that term.   But it is what it is regardless of what term.  There are people who are advocates of Darwin's beliefs.   You must call them something, it would seem.  Who else could I be talking about?
I don't have a need for that expression, because I don't discuss evolution in bits and pieces.   
Quote
What is this if not a semantics debate trick?   
It was a request that you clarify a term that you introduced to the discussion that does not have a set definition understood by everyone. I was very insistent on getting a response from you, as you have not yet provided any indication that you really do know what the ToE says as I have pointed out several times. Still waiting for you to get back to that request, by the way.
Quote
I'd rather focus on the empirical data and logical arguments for or against irreducible complexity which I thought was the topic of this thread. 
Yet you keep ignoring the posts that refute your position, without ever bothering to refute them with support that demonstrates that your position is valid to begin with.
Quote
I only want to know the truth
I'm not convinced of that.
Quote
and I am in a relentless pursuit of the truth
Well, you're relentless in picking and choosing what you will respond to, I'll give you that.
Quote
and therefore I must be open minded to all possibilities that have not been ruled out given none has been proven.
So you'll accept whatever validates your pre-suppositions, and ignore whatever doesn't? If we were discussing Zeus, would you take the same position?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: kaziglu bey on October 20, 2013, 12:55:01 PM

My argument isn't "God did it",  it is natural selection and random mutations don't account for irreducible complexity so maybe there is a creator of some sort,
Irreducible complexity is a term fabricated by religious idiots who then state that it is a fact, without any evidence, and then use their manufactured worldview to support yet another manufactured worldview. Please understand: arguing from the standpoint of irreducible complexity is nothing more than a pseudo sophisticated attempt at argument from ignorance.
Quote
maybe there is another evolutionary pathway that does not involve random mutations and natural selection,
Maybe there is, and we have not discovered this yet. The best we could do is t say that we are not entirely certain as to the direct mechanisms of evolution, and that more evidence needs to be gathered. But, as more evidence is gathered, it all points in one direction: evolution has and still does occur and is the best explanation for the diversity of life on this planet.
Quote
maybe there is another natural process that we have not uncovered that explains it.
Again, maybe. If this is the case, why not just say "I don't know" rather than assert that we are the result of an intelligent designer? If you want to assert Intelligent Design (as your arguments thus far clearly indicate) then you have to have the evidence to support this assertion, not just an empty philosophy based on made up terminology.
Quote
This demonstrates that I am open minded and not a zealot or ideologue on this issue. 
Well you certainly have done an effective job of convincing everyone here otherwise.

Quote
I did get into how the first lifeform originated
Which has nothing at all to do with evolution.
Quote
to make the point that we can not rule out a "God" because nobody has proven life can originate from non-life via a natural process of some sort.
Well, the explanations we have for virtually all other known phenomena was previously "God", and science has shown that it is "not God", ruling out God as an explanation seems far more helpful than including it. And using "God" as an explanation doesn't actually explain anything, doesn't predict anything, can't be applied in any meaningful way to the universe. It is simply not scientific. It is no different than saying "magic".
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 12:55:17 PM
I'm out for now -  have to get back to studying for my Biology test on the Theory of Evolution tomorrow.  ;D
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 01:05:36 PM
You have assumed that structures will breakdown based on what you see in animals today. It is not just the structure which changes but the function. If you really want to learn something you could try an online search for evolution of the bones in the inner ear. They were not always there but migrated. Also for the evolution of the eye. Every stage in the evolution of the eye still exists in various animals alive today. Try an online search.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on October 20, 2013, 01:06:39 PM
I'm out for now -  have to get back to studying for my Biology test on the Theory of Evolution tomorrow.  ;D

You should ask DrTesla if he could help.  :laugh:
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 01:08:13 PM
Resource:MIT Free online courses that teach biology (http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/biology/)

Now I'm really going to go study, with no help from DrT  :P
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 01:10:08 PM
I think you are missing the point.
No, she[1] (and by extension, I) understand your point quite well.

Quote from: DrTesla
The structure or system with irreducible complexity must have evolved from more simple structures with added functionality in a piecemeal and sequential manner to that complex state if Darwin evolution theory is valid.
Okay, this is a fallacy - you are assuming your conclusion (irreducible complexity) as part of your premise.  You do not get to claim by fiat that something is irreducibly complex unless you actually show evidence that it is.  So I will restate for you.  "A complex structure or system must have evolved from simpler structures by those structures incrementally adding functionality or increasing efficiency through a sequential process for evolutionary theory to be valid".

Quote from: DrTesla
Therefore,  it follows if the complex structure of system can not be reduced to parts
Incorrect.  Evolution doesn't work like Lego blocks, where you add or take away blocks in order to make something.  It doesn't work like plugging in a hard drive or extra RAM into a computer, or by plugging in a cornea or cones/rods into an eye.  You don't prove irreducible complexity by claiming that you have to be able to separate the eye into its various 'pieces' for evolution to be correct, and then claiming that you can't add or subtract pieces and still have a working eye.  That all proceeds from your circular assumption that the eye is like a machine, with parts that are plugged in.

Quote from: DrTesla
that could have sequentially been added upon to form the final complex system or structure,  then evolution did not occur.
Again, this is the same circular assumption you've been working from all along.  You're treating evolution as if it's like a process to build a machine by adding or subtracting parts, and it isn't.

Quote from: DrTesla
If I am wrong, walk me thru your logic.   I do not wish to be wrong and I have been wrong on things in the past.  I don't not fear being ignorant but I can only learn when somebody logically shows me I am wrong.
Look, we've been trying to show why you're wrong, and you keep blithely insisting that intelligent design and irreducible complexity have to be correct because they're 'logical' - to you.  The problem is, your logic is based on fallacies which you don't even know are fallacies due to your lack of knowledge.  In order to rectify that, you have to take the time to learn about things like evolution and biology, so you can understand that they really don't work the same way as designing and building a machine.
 1. I'm assuming from the picture, if I'm wrong, tell me
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: nogodsforme on October 20, 2013, 02:42:16 PM
Dr Tesla, you do not understand what the theory of evolution is, or you would not keep bringing up the origin of the first life form. You have to demonstrate evidence that all life forms were created separately and in their final form at some point. There is no evidence that this happened. The evidence, including both fossils and DNA,  consistently support the TOE. You can't just keep saying that you don't know how it could be. You have to give some evidence that it happened some other way.

Evolution is about how life forms change, over time, in adaptation to the environment. There are tons of resources online that give step by step explanations, including the evidence that supports each step. Here is one from that well-known atheist propaganda arm, the American Museum of Natural History.[1]
http://www.amnh.org/exhibitions/past-exhibitions/human-origins/understanding-our-past/evolution-how-it-works

Here is an article that shows how DNA evidence supporting the divergence between chimps and humans is helping us to understand why people get cancer and chimps don't. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/08/120823142735.htm

Another point I want you to think about is this: we know that the TOE is valid because when we use it in applications, the TOE holds up. False theories do not produce consistent valid results. And the TOE has been consistently producing valid results so well, that no other theory comes anywhere close. The TOE works. That makes the TOE as true as science can be.

When we use the stuff we have learned by studying from the perspective of 150 years of evolutionary biology, we get really cool, useful applications. We get new cures for diseases, new prosthetics for amputees, new ways to track down criminals. We can solve murders that were committed decades ago. Damn, we can clone living beings now!  You can get an exact copy of your beloved dog, if you have enough money. We are now able to bring back extinct animal species-- have already done it with birds. That never would have happened without the TOE.

When the people who think that ID or some other theory is better develop some applications, ie, show that it actually has evidence in support of it, instead of trying to critique something that actually works, we will be willing to seriously consider it. 

We have largely eliminated polio and smallpox-- that alone should have the planet jumping for joy over the TOE. And, 99% of the planet is jumping for joy. Only a tiny minority of folks deny the TOE, and it is always over religious reasons. But no similar objections to germ theory, atomic theory, gravitational theory. Just evolutionary theory.....What is strangest is that the objections are mainly in the US where we, ironically, benefit more than anyone else from the TOE.

Someday in the near future, we will bring back extinct hominid species like Neanderthals. http://www.public.wsu.edu/gened/learn-modules/top_longfor/timeline/03_index.html
 
We have found that some of us have some of that extinct hominid DNA in us. I wonder what the ID/creationist crowd will say when there are other humanoid species walking around--when did the creator find the time to make them? And why?  :?
 1. Which, incidentally also sends each of us atheists weekly checks of $10,000, just to post pro-evolution crap known by all scientists to be false on this site. [Not.] &)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Graybeard on October 20, 2013, 02:55:28 PM
So are we down to you posting random quotes from people you've found online and ignoring the arguments we make?  That's called preaching, DrTesla, and it's against the rules of the forum.

It isn't preaching at all.  You guys have been been listed one citation after another on here while I have been essentially talking out loud and trying to explain things myself.   I just thought I wasn't explaining IC very well  because so many people were denying that a system or structure could be irreducibly complex.
I agree that your explanations of IC have been lacking clarity. Questions are often asked to elicit details that will clarify things in both the questioner's and the questioned's mind.

Perhaps you could respond to a few (esp. jaimehlers's) and then continue from there?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 03:22:14 PM
So are we down to you posting random quotes from people you've found online and ignoring the arguments we make?  That's called preaching, DrTesla, and it's against the rules of the forum.

It isn't preaching at all.  You guys have been been listed one citation after another on here while I have been essentially talking out loud and trying to explain things myself.   I just thought I wasn't explaining IC very well  because so many people were denying that a system or structure could be irreducibly complex.
I agree that your explanations of IC have been lacking clarity. Questions are often asked to elicit details that will clarify things in both the questioner's and the questioned's mind.

Perhaps you could respond to a few (esp. jaimehlers's) and then continue from there?


You can read up on irreducible complexity on your own at various websites.  I don't think it is that complicated.   Darwin himself said that if a system or structure could be shown to be irreducibly complex then it would prove his theory was wrong.   Scientists have submitted the bacterial flagellum as an example of a structure that is irreducibly complex.  Same with the eye.   And other examples.  I've been told that I don't understand evolution but clearly people on here don't understand arguments against evolution and these arguments have been out there for at least 17 years.    And there were several people who subscribe to evolution here that were confusing variation within species as the result of natural selection  with cross species evolution as the result of natural selection and random mutations.   I have shown respect to these people even as some of them argue that I don't know what I am talking about. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 03:27:13 PM
Oh goody you're back. Are you planning to sweep up the hanging chads you've littered about the thread yet?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 03:29:58 PM
Irreducible complexity is a term fabricated by religious idiots who then state that it is a fact, without any evidence, and then use their manufactured worldview to support yet another manufactured worldview. Please understand: arguing from the standpoint of irreducible complexity is nothing more than a pseudo sophisticated attempt at argument from ignorance.

I would say "religious idiots" (love that civility there)  are trying to piggyback on the back of scientists who are poking logical holes in the Darwin evolution much like atheists who know nothing about science piggyback on the back of the scientists who agree with the evolution theory.   Keep in mind religious idiots have also asserted in the past that God invented evolution to create us so they are always going to argue the science matches their belief in God regardless if it is contradictory.   You dont' say evolution is invalid because some religious people think it is legit too, right?  But you do that when they support a theory that counters evolution.

I have not made any references to biblical God so to insert religion into this debate is strawman flogging.  You can flog it all day but it doesn't refute me because I have not inserted religion in here.    I  tend to believe in some kind of "creator" that can code DNA somehow but I do not claim to be able to prove that.  I don't believe in the afterlife.  What is a person who believes in some kind of "designer" or intelligent design process but doesn't believe in God?  Moreover, is it relevant if I making logical arguments not religious arguments?    I don't think the idea that there is an an intelligent designer of some sort is anymore "crazy" than the idea that life could have originated on its own from non-life and have the ability to reproduce from the start. 

  All I am doing on here is poking holes in the evolution theory.   If Darwin evolution isn't right doesn't not necessarily mean there is a God, and I have made this point numerous times.  People act that way though, on both sides.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 03:31:10 PM
You can read up on irreducible complexity on your own at various websites. 
You could do the same for basic biology. I even gave you a link.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 20, 2013, 03:39:36 PM
Animals may mourn the loss of another that was always around but that doesn't mean they ponder the meaning of life and think about what happens when they die.

Actually you are right and I concede.  Humans, to the best of my knowledge, are the only species that has "pondered" what might befall them after death and has invented gods and heavens etc to fill the void.  A complete bumpluck to satisfy wishful thinking.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 03:40:34 PM
ID does not merit the designation of "theory", not the way you are trying to use it. Theory is not applicable and you've already been given the explanation of why. Could you do us the courtesy of reading what is written to you before you make snippy remarks about "loving the civility", you rude little twerp?

Inigo Montoya stopped by and asked me to give you a message. He said "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."  8)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 03:45:12 PM
You can read up on irreducible complexity on your own at various websites. 
You could do the same for basic biology. I even gave you a link.

lol, you guys want me to respond to all of you at once and read all of your many citiations at the same time.  Meanwhile I have to eat and try to spend some time off the computer on a nice sunny day.   I am only a man, ostensibly evolved from simpler lifeforms.  :)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 03:50:04 PM
ID does not merit the designation of "theory", not the way you are trying to use it. Theory is not applicable and you've already been given the explanation of why. Could you do us the courtesy of reading what is written to you before you make snippy remarks about "loving the civility", you rude little twerp?

Inigo Montoya stopped by and asked me to give you a message. He said "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."  8)

I have not gotten into the bulk of intelligent design outside of their argument of irreducible complexity which Darwin understood would be an obstacle if IC occurs.  I quoted Darwin saying this in a previous post.   He assumed there was no IC, but he didn't know anything about DNA and molecular biology.   

I might peruse the Google machine for some alternative explanations because sometimes how something is conveyed makes a difference in the message getting across to others.

I don't think referring to Christians as "religious idiots"  is an act of civility or necessary.  They have a different belief about the afterlife and the origin of life than you,  so what?   Why make it a contentious thing.   They don't even claim to be able to prove it, they take it on faith. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 03:52:50 PM
Well, you could accept the request for a one-on-one debate that One Above All has asked you for.

Or you could just start posting actual responses. It's not like you haven't had plenty to say. why is so little of it in response to what has been asked of you? Notice that I continue asking questions? It's because you keep pretending you aren't aware of them, while responding to my posts. It's a fun distraction for me to see how long you can avoid addressing anything of substance in any of the posts you've been avoiding.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 03:57:21 PM
I might peruse the Google machine for
a basic primer in Biology perhaps?
Quote
some alternative explanations
Start with the theory of evolution.
Quote
because sometimes how something is conveyed makes a difference in the message getting across to others.
I'm going to suggest, once again, that you are mistaking the source of the problem.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 03:57:33 PM
Well, you could accept the request for a one-on-one debate that One Above All has asked you for.

Or you could just start posting actual responses. It's not like you haven't had plenty to say. why is so little of it in response to what has been asked of you? Notice that I continue asking questions? It's because you keep pretending you aren't aware of them, while responding to my posts. It's a fun distraction for me to see how long you can avoid addressing anything of substance in any of the posts you've been avoiding.

I've been responding to numerous people on here it seems.  I just respond to the posts that I see which are generally the  most recent ones.   I plan to respond to some that I haven't if I find them good arguments and not just a personal insult of some kind.   Some of the arguments are they just don't accept something I have said and I obviously cannot force you to accept anything I say.   So I could just repeat it but then you will repeat your previuos response to it and round and round we go.  At some point you just have to let the audience decide who has the better argument and I can live with them thinking me a fool.   
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 04:03:36 PM
Animals may mourn the loss of another that was always around but that doesn't mean they ponder the meaning of life and think about what happens when they die.

Actually you are right and I concede.  Humans, to the best of my knowledge, are the only species that has "pondered" what might befall them after death and has invented gods and heavens etc to fill the void.  A complete bumpluck to satisfy wishful thinking.

the ability to ponder things and come to wrong conclusions is still evidence of a higher lifeform than one who cannot be right or wrong about something and "invent" various imaginary things. 

but if you want to believe you are no different from a cockroach then don't let me stop you.  lol  I don't see what the problem is in conceding humans at the most evolved species, or most complex creation, depending on how you see our origin.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 04:04:19 PM
Well, you could accept the request for a one-on-one debate that One Above All has asked you for.

Or you could just start posting actual responses. It's not like you haven't had plenty to say. why is so little of it in response to what has been asked of you? Notice that I continue asking questions? It's because you keep pretending you aren't aware of them, while responding to my posts. It's a fun distraction for me to see how long you can avoid addressing anything of substance in any of the posts you've been avoiding.

I've been responding to numerous people on here it seems.  I just respond to the posts that I see which are generally the  most recent ones.   I plan to respond to some that I haven't if I find them good arguments and not just a personal insult of some kind.   Some of the arguments are they just don't accept something I have said and I obviously cannot force you to accept anything I say.   So I could just repeat it but then you will repeat your previuos response to it and round and round we go.  At some point you just have to let the audience decide who has the better argument and I can live with them thinking me a fool.

Dude, so far I'm not saying you're a fool. I am saying, quite clearly, that you have not given any reader any reason to think you know what you are talking about. I've asked you repeatedly to provide something that will demonstrate that you understand what the ToE says, and you've ignored me every time. What makes you think you are qualified to judge a good argument? You can't even clearly prove that you understand the topic at hand!



Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 04:07:31 PM
Well, you could accept the request for a one-on-one debate that One Above All has asked you for.

Or you could just start posting actual responses. It's not like you haven't had plenty to say. why is so little of it in response to what has been asked of you? Notice that I continue asking questions? It's because you keep pretending you aren't aware of them, while responding to my posts. It's a fun distraction for me to see how long you can avoid addressing anything of substance in any of the posts you've been avoiding.

 
I've been responding to numerous people on here it seems.  I just respond to the posts that I see which are generally the  most recent ones.   I plan to respond to some that I haven't if I find them good arguments and not just a personal insult of some kind.   Some of the arguments are they just don't accept something I have said and I obviously cannot force you to accept anything I say.   So I could just repeat it but then you will repeat your previuos response to it and round and round we go.  At some point you just have to let the audience decide who has the better argument and I can live with them thinking me a fool.

Dude, so far I'm not saying you're a fool. I am saying, quite clearly, that you have not given any reader any reason to think you know what you are talking about. I've asked you repeatedly to provide something that will demonstrate that you understand what the ToE says, and you've ignored me every time. What makes you think you are qualified to judge a good argument? You can't even clearly prove that you understand the topic at hand!

Ok, well I have demonstrated a basic understanding of what the TOE.   You don't accept that.  What is it if not the idea the lifeforms became more complex over time due to random mutations and natural selection.   Do you find that too simplistic?  Or do you think that is the wrong definition.   I want to know because why would I want to try to refute something nobody has proposed.   
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 20, 2013, 04:09:38 PM
Not the actual mechanism, but surely the fact that there was a mechanism was stating the obvious, even back then?

Was it?

I'd have thought so, yes. But I'm willing to be corrected.

and a "designer" has no need of a mechanism by which to transfer traits that makes it look exactly as if organisms shared a common ancestry, and where the relationships are exactly as are evident elsewhere in nature (in anatomy, and in the fossil record), unless the "designer" in question wanted us to believe that evolutionary Theory were essentially true and that organisms shared a common ancestry. Which raises the question "why would such an entity do so, save to yank our collective chains?"

I've never understood why designer and common ancestry have to be mutually exclusive.

Logically, I don't think common ancestry and a Creator have to be mutually exclusive. There's no obvious incompatibility between a Deistic "Creator" and common ancestry. And there are plenty of Deists out there who would adopt this position.

However, the more you move into specific sets of quite complex claims about said "Creator", the more baggage those notions carry and the greater the risk to their compatibility with the notion of common ancestry. The minute said "Creator" intervenes in the natural process and starts "designing" organisms, you're bypassing natural selection. What you have is either a kind of artificial selection (like we've done with wheat, dogs, cats, horses, cattle and sheep) or something akin to genetic modification (like we've done with an assortment of agricultural products). At that point you're no longer talking about evolution; and in the latter case, even the notion of common ancestry starts to look shaky.

This is why supposed "refutations" of evolutionary Theory, and common misconceptions about it, stem chiefly from certain brands of monotheism, where there are clear doctrinal views on the question of how the world and humanity emerged. Those brands of monotheism operate on the premise that if any part of their canon is wrong, then their God cannot be true, and the entire edifice of their belief-system comes crumbling down.

And it seems that they treat the bits of science they don't like in the same way. Despite numerous attempts to explain to such people that abiogenesis and evolutionary Theory are different things, that plate tectonics and geology are also not the same as evolutionary Theory, and that cosmology is as far from evolutionary Theory as one can possibly get and still be in a scientific discipline (pretty much the only ways to go from cosmology are maths and philosophy), these kinds of theists demand that science - in the guise of its biggest bugbear for them, which is evolutionary Theory - provide some sort of overarching omni-explanatory narrative, that encompasses absolutely everything from the origin of the Universe, to the existence of carrots, handbags, cheese, toilets, Russians, planets, hamsters, weddings, poets, Stalin, Kuala Lumpur and Internet memes, to why it's a bad idea to act like a jerk and park across two bays in an shopping mall parking lot, to what the point is of anything and what meaning is there to life anyway.

In short, these people see scientific advancement as a threat to their "holy book", are looking for a kind of scientific "holy book" to compare with the one they've currently got. Some of them are genuinely seeking answers, though from a position of such overwhelming alienness that communication is often slow, frustrating, and very often heated. But they need those answers. They need that narrative, at least as compelling, at least as moving as they one they have. And if science can't do that, well, science has failed. That's how the thinking goes.

The problem is that the human quest to find out how the natural world works doesn't easily provide such a nice, neat narrative. Reality isn't obliged to work that way. Sacred texts and doctrines work that way, pandering to human desires for explanations because essentially, they were constructed by humans, for humans. The Universe, on the other hand, wasn't so obviously constructed with humans in mind, nor is it under any obligation to reveal its secrets to humans - so those secrets are harder to obtain, and not necessarily obtained in an order that gives us a nice neat story to tell.

Further, anyone coming to a forum like this with such a mountain of questions, combined with such a poor grasp of evolutionary Theory (often made worse by having been fed misrepresentations of the same by well-meaning peers) and often armed with a series of somewhat random and haphazard questions seeking explanations for everything from cosmology to sociology, inserted into discussions like random trap-doors that take one to an entirely new level of labyrinthine discourse, often try to bite off more than they can chew.

It's hard enough to resolve just one issue, such as irreducible complexity, unless there's a genuine willingness on the part of the person concerned to discard their own preconceptions, do some research and learn why the objection they've raised is silly (and frankly, it invariably is). It's made ten times worse when they fire off an entire volley of barely-related questions, many of the answers to which apparently fall on deaf ears. And it's even worse when none of the answers elicited really satisfy the understated or even unstated desire for an overarching narrative, for them to have something to plug into their matrix as a replacement for the bits of their own creed that they're not really comfortable with any longer, but are not confident enough to shed.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 20, 2013, 04:15:14 PM
<snip>

That still doesn't answer the question. I'll post it in big, bold letters for you:
DO YOU, OR DO YOU NOT ACCEPT MY CHALLENGE FOR A ONE-ON-ONE DEBATE?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 04:19:38 PM
<snip>

That still doesn't answer the question. I'll post it in big, bold letters for you:
DO YOU, OR DO YOU NOT ACCEPT MY CHALLENGE FOR A ONE-ON-ONE DEBATE?

I find it unseemly for you to assert that I should only debate with one person on here because it assumes that you are the superior debater of your position which may not be true.  I am trying to answer all the criticisms by everybody but it takes some time.  Many of them are the same points that I've addressed already  or the same argument expressed in a different way.   

If I am not mistaken, you sent me a negative Darwin with a nastygram wishing sterilization on me which was most vile. So really why should I  want to talk to you and not other polite people
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 20, 2013, 04:20:18 PM
Ok, well I have demonstrated a basic understanding of what the TOE.   You don't accept that.  What is it if not the idea the lifeforms became more complex over time due to random mutations and natural selection.   Do you find that too simplistic?  Or do you think that is the wrong definition.   I want to know because why would I want to try to refute something nobody has proposed.

I think it would be more accurate to say that populations change over time due to genetic changes (random mutation is one mechanism of genetic change, but it's not the only one) combined with natural selection. Those populations may "become more complex" as a consequence of "arms races" between different species, though complexity isn't exactly a prerequisite, just a likely outcome in some scenarios.

Going back to IC, though, since this still isn't resolved. Seriously, check out the Kitzmiller vs. Dover Area School Board trial transcript on the subject of IC, and/or check out Ken Miller's video:

 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RQQ7ubVIqo4)

Check up on the Wikipedia entry (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irreducible_complexity). Look it up on TalkOrigins (http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB200.html) (where, incidentally, you'll probably find the answers to a great many other questions you have about the ToE). IC is totally discredited as a postulate, overwhelmingly rejected by the scientific establishment, and was absolutely demolished in court - as I already mentioned several pages ago, though sadly my post wasn't one of those deemed worthy of a reply, it seems.

You don't need to have us tell you all this, though: if you can find Harun Yahya (shame on you) using a search engine, you can find the Web sites that'll tell you in no uncertain terms why IC is bunk.

You can if you like keep asserting that black is white and that IC has some actual substance behind it, but if you do so, you are frankly wrong, you will have proven yourself incapable of error-correction, and discussion will get nowhere fast.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 20, 2013, 04:25:27 PM
I find it unseemly for you to assert that I should only debate with one person on here because it assumes that you are the superior debater of your position which may not be true.

I do not assume that I am the superior debater; just that my position is the correct one. If you're sure of your position, debating it with me will prove which one of us is correct.

I am trying to answer all the criticisms by everybody but it takes some time.  Many of them are the same points that I've addressed already  or the same argument expressed in a different way.

A one-on-one debate would keep you from being overwhelmed with replies. This has already been stated. See? We all have to repeat ourselves from time to time.

If I am not mistaken, you sent me a negative Darwin with a nastygram wishing sterilization on me which was most vile. So really why should I  want to talk to you and not other polite people

I just said not to reproduce. You'd be doing the world a favor if you followed my advice.

EDIT: You know, I (and others) would stop bringing up this debate if you just said "Yes, One Above All, I wish to debate you", or "No, One Above All, I do not wish to debate you".
EDIT #2: A little ass-kissing wouldn't hurt either, seeing as how I am the supreme ruler of the multiverse and such. ;)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 04:32:24 PM

I think it would be more accurate to say that populations change over time due to genetic changes (random mutation is one mechanism of genetic change, but it's not the only one) combined with natural selection. Those populations may "become more complex" as a consequence of "arms races" between different species, though complexity isn't exactly a prerequisite, just a likely outcome in some scenarios.

Going back to IC, though, since this still isn't resolved. Seriously, check out the Kitzmiller vs. Dover Area School Board trial transcript on the subject of IC, and/or check out Ken Miller's video:


Why would it be in court?  lol that is absurd.  They are supposed to resolve legal matters not science.  The justice system is more about the biases of the judges than law these days it seems.   

Doesn't a genetic change have to be a random mutation?  How else could a genetic change occur?  This seems like semantics trickery.  :)  The arms race thing doesn't sound all that believable but interesting. 

You are basically saying it is bunk because these other scientists say it is and a judge decided it is in a court case.   I wouldn't expect most of the Darwin evolution scientists to concede IC is legit so I will have to examine their arguments.   Many of the arguments are much more advanced then your average person can understand with no knowledge of DNA and genetics and biochemistry so they could be saying a lot of false things but it could sound good.    So in the end it comes down to who your average non-biochemist  trusts more.    I think in a general sense the IC observation  is a blow to evolution theory and I've seen Darwin people  acknowledging it is an obstacle in both direct and indirect ways.   

I have not seen you address the bacteria flaggelum example or the eye example of IC as they propose it. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 20, 2013, 04:39:06 PM
the ability to ponder things and come to wrong conclusions is still evidence of a higher lifeform than one who cannot be right or wrong about something and "invent" various imaginary things. 

Sorry, I don't understand. Are you saying that the existence of  "a higher lifeform" is evidence of creation?  Surely it's just an illustration of evolution of traits. There are life forms we can classify as "higher" on many chosen criteria e.g. worms are higher life forms than amoebas because they have more cells, sharks are higher life forms than sponges because they can move.
Why is the ability to "ponder", using the known physiology of a voluminous brain, suddenly something somehow more special?  Why is it more special than comparing a compound eye of a fly to an eagle's eye? 

but if you want to believe you are no different from a cockroach then don't let me stop you.  lol 
I didn't say that - you know I didn't say that - but your laughter at your own shallow joke reveals something about you.

I don't see what the problem is in conceding humans at the most evolved species, or most complex creation, depending on how you see our origin.
The problem is clear. We are most evolved in one aspect alone - cranial capacity. You as an individual are not so special - you are relying on the collective recorded knowledge of millions of people who went before you to appear as smart as you are. Thousands of species have amazing specialisations we humans do not have.  In fact we've gone backwards in many respects since we inherited bigger brains.

Your problem has a specific technical name ... anthropomorphic arrogance!


Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 04:44:40 PM

Your problem has a specific technical name ... anthropomorphic arrogance!

That is a fair point....I do discriminate against other animals. 

When I see a dog do something like design a nuclear power plant  or a fish design an internal combustion engine, then I will concede we aren't a higher lifeform.    I don't think asserting that because they have specific traits that we don't have that might be complex and advantageous in themselves  refutes my assertion that we are a higher lifeform because we have self awareness, the ability to design things, the abilituy to talk, the ability to learn things outside of the positive / negative reinforcement type of learning that you can do with dogs and other animals using food and other means. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Graybeard on October 20, 2013, 04:58:36 PM
I agree that your explanations of IC have been lacking clarity. Questions are often asked to elicit details that will clarify things in both the questioner's and the questioned's mind.

Perhaps you could respond to a few (esp. jaimehlers's) and then continue from there?


You can read up on irreducible complexity on your own at various websites.  I don't think it is that complicated.   Darwin himself said that if a system or structure could be shown to be irreducibly complex then it would prove his theory was wrong.   Scientists have submitted the bacterial flagellum as an example of a structure that is irreducibly complex.  Same with the eye.   And other examples.  I've been told that I don't understand evolution but clearly people on here don't understand arguments against evolution and these arguments have been out there for at least 17 years.    And there were several people who subscribe to evolution here that were confusing variation within species as the result of natural selection  with cross species evolution as the result of natural selection and random mutations.   I have shown respect to these people even as some of them argue that I don't know what I am talking about.
Clearly you did not read my message: I am not asking you to ask members to search the webs. I am not asking you to say what you think of others. I am asking you to respond to questions and particularly those of jaimehlers.

If there is something you do not understand about this request, you should PM me.

GB Mod
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 20, 2013, 05:00:45 PM
I don't think asserting that because they have specific traits that we don't have that might be complex and advantageous in themselves  refutes my assertion that we are a higher lifeform because we have self awareness, the ability to design things, the abilituy to talk, the ability to learn things outside of the positive / negative reinforcement type of learning that you can do with dogs and other animals using food and other means.

It's not really about refutation.  It's about perspective.  When/if we obliterate human life in a nuclear war, cockroaches will be the higher life form because some of them tucked away in narrow places will survive the storm of radiation.

Meanwhile the human "higher lifeform" fucks the planet's environment apace, causing the extinction of many other species of yet unqualified value to the human, invents competing religions of hatred, stockpiles weapons of mass destruction, defends artificial borders, legislates policies of discrimination, and finds an unending procession of ways to screw each other in business and life..
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 05:01:55 PM
Clearly you did not read my message: I am not asking you to ask members to search the webs. I am not asking you to say what you think of others. I am asking you to respond to questions and particularly those of jaimehlers.

If there is something you do not understand about this request, you should PM me.

GB Mod

Ok sounds like you want to ban me if I don't dance for you.   Am I wrong?  [Irrelevant chat deleted GB Mod]
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 05:07:20 PM
You can read up on irreducible complexity on your own at various websites.  I don't think it is that complicated.   Darwin himself said that if a system or structure could be shown to be irreducibly complex then it would prove his theory was wrong.   Scientists have submitted the bacterial flagellum as an example of a structure that is irreducibly complex.  Same with the eye.   And other examples.  I've been told that I don't understand evolution but clearly people on here don't understand arguments against evolution and these arguments have been out there for at least 17 years.    And there were several people who subscribe to evolution here that were confusing variation within species as the result of natural selection  with cross species evolution as the result of natural selection and random mutations.   I have shown respect to these people even as some of them argue that I don't know what I am talking about.
Graybeard instructed you to respond to people's questions, not to complain about how people are treating you or that they aren't accepting your arguments.

As I have brought up five times by now - which is five times more than I should have had to - you need to answer my argument that your "irreducible complexity" doesn't actually apply to things that humans make.  I will restate it here so you don't have an excuse to ignore it.

----

Things that humans design and make, whether cars, or tools, or computer programs, or whatever, are not irreducibly complex.  They are designed to be taken apart and put back together, so you can maintain them or replace broken components.  Indeed, they're designed to be taken apart and put back together, at least by people who know what they're doing, and often it is possible to remove parts from something and still have it perform its designed function.

Yet, you and other people who think irreducible complexity has actual standing as an observation and a basis for the intelligent design argument claim that certain organs are so "irreducibly complex" that they can't be taken apart and still fulfill their designed function.  Indeed, if you attempt to treat something like an eye or a bacterial flagellum as if it were a machine, you'll just end up with a mess that can never be put back together.  That means that despite the fact that our experience in designing things does not give any credence to irreducible complexity, people like you try to insist that it must have significance when it comes to biological organisms - that some Great Designer in the Sky put those organs together (even though we actually can't take them apart) and then try to use the fact that you can't take them apart as if they were a machine as 'proof' that they were designed, even though this would be an insanely stupid way to actually design things.

So, do you have an answer for this?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 05:11:00 PM
You can read up on irreducible complexity on your own at various websites.  I don't think it is that complicated.   Darwin himself said that if a system or structure could be shown to be irreducibly complex then it would prove his theory was wrong.   Scientists have submitted the bacterial flagellum as an example of a structure that is irreducibly complex.  Same with the eye.   And other examples.  I've been told that I don't understand evolution but clearly people on here don't understand arguments against evolution and these arguments have been out there for at least 17 years.    And there were several people who subscribe to evolution here that were confusing variation within species as the result of natural selection  with cross species evolution as the result of natural selection and random mutations.   I have shown respect to these people even as some of them argue that I don't know what I am talking about.
Graybeard instructed you to respond to people's questions, not to complain about how people are treating you or that they aren't accepting your arguments.

As I have brought up five times by now - which is five times more than I should have had to - you need to answer my argument that your "irreducible complexity" doesn't actually apply to things that humans make.  I will restate it here so you don't have an excuse to ignore it.

----

Things that humans design and make, whether cars, or tools, or computer programs, or whatever, are not irreducibly complex.  They are designed to be taken apart and put back together, so you can maintain them or replace broken components.  Indeed, they're designed to be taken apart and put back together, at least by people who know what they're doing, and often it is possible to remove parts from something and still have it perform its designed function.

Yet, you and other people who think irreducible complexity has actual standing as an observation and a basis for the intelligent design argument claim that certain organs are so "irreducibly complex" that they can't be taken apart and still fulfill their designed function.  Indeed, if you attempt to treat something like an eye or a bacterial flagellum as if it were a machine, you'll just end up with a mess that can never be put back together.  That means that despite the fact that our experience in designing things does not give any credence to irreducible complexity, people like you try to insist that it must have significance when it comes to biological organisms - that some Great Designer in the Sky put those organs together (even though we actually can't take them apart) and then try to use the fact that you can't take them apart as if they were a machine as 'proof' that they were designed, even though this would be an insanely stupid way to actually design things.

So, do you have an answer for this?

Sounds to me like you expect the moderator to kind of coddle you and force people to respond to you.  I am not puppet on a string. 

I think that I have answered you numerous times and you don't accept it.   Now, I will try to review your post, if that guy does't ban me which seems somewhat unlikely unless I misperceived the tone of his post,  but I am probably going to take a break for a bit because I need to eat and do some things and I have been posting on here for a bit.    I don't think you are more important than anybody else on here so it isn't legit to single out one person that I must respond to.  Sounds like you are the moderator's pet on here or something.   

To be honest I don't want to respond to you now because I've been goaded by people on here to do so which seems to be elevating you to a postion that you don't have over me or any person.   You are not source authority on this issue and I don't think this issue is going to be resolved one way or another on the internet forums.     I will try to set aside my ego but I almost feel like I will be banned if the moderator decides the answer is not good enough in some way.  Sometimes internet forums aren't free speech forums, depending on the approach of the website.   I thought there would be more people skeptical of evolution on here because they refer to it as an addictive discussion but if you don't have people who disagree it isn't much of a discussion but rather a validation exercise.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: shnozzola on October 20, 2013, 05:16:03 PM
Hang in there Dr. Tesla, you have very intelligent debaters ( and the truth, if I may ;))  against you that will eventually have you contemplating so many sources you will begin to learn a new way of looking at things.

Deux ex Machina, jaimehlers, and a host of others surely have you thinking things over.  Here is one of our best evolution debaters, Kcrady.  Read his thoughts if you have time.  If you search his posts, his ideas of oily lipid and fatty acid pools with enough heat and electric charges, being repeated over and over for eons, make for some thoughtful consideration of one possible theory of  abiogenesis.  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abiogenesis)
 
http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,19952.msg440086.html#msg440086
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 05:22:30 PM
I think it would be more accurate to say that populations change over time due to genetic changes (random mutation is one mechanism of genetic change, but it's not the only one) combined with natural selection. Those populations may "become more complex" as a consequence of "arms races" between different species, though complexity isn't exactly a prerequisite, just a likely outcome in some scenarios.

Agreed, and thank you for adding that. Some of my frustration is stemming from this insistence that complexity is somehow a requirement of evolution and the complete glossing over of any part of the theory other than natural selection. Add in an insistence on (as near as I can tell) calling natural selection "Darwinian evolution" and the headbanging was nearly getting bloody.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 20, 2013, 05:40:02 PM
Sounds to me <snip>

To be honest I don't want to respond to you now because I've been goaded by people on here to do so which seems to be elevating you to a postion that you don't have over me or any person.   
Dodge
Quote
You are not source authority on this issue and I don't think this issue is going to be resolved one way or another on the internet forums.
No one held a gun to your head forcing you to participate, right?
Quote
     I will try to set aside my ego but I almost feel like I will be banned if the moderator decides the answer is not good enough in some way. 
No, you just need to stop avoiding questions that you find difficult to answer.
Quote
Sometimes internet forums aren't free speech forums, depending on the approach of the website.   
Did you read the rules when you signed up? If not, you ought.
Quote
I thought there would be more people skeptical of evolution on here because they refer to it as an addictive discussion
Huh? What on earth would have given you THAT idea? How are those things related in any sense at all?
Quote
but if you don't have people who disagree
There's YOU, right here and now.
Quote
it isn't much of a discussion but rather a validation exercise.
Battle cry of the loser? You can find all the validation you seek in any number of website populated with people who agree with you. You're just whining because we don't and you don't understand why not. You're making excuses for your own failure to support your position.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 20, 2013, 05:44:27 PM
Okay, it's late and my patience is wearing thin.

Why would it be in court?  lol that is absurd.  They are supposed to resolve legal matters not science.  The justice system is more about the biases of the judges than law these days it seems.   

You are basically saying it is bunk because these other scientists say it is and a judge decided it is in a court case.

No, I am encouraging you to read the material and discover for yourself why the scientists say it's bunk - and how, precisely, Dr. Behe - the poster-boy for the ID movement in respect of Irreducible Complexity - condemned himself through his own words on the fact that he had not bothered to do any research into any of the literature that demolished his own claims.

Quote
Doesn't a genetic change have to be a random mutation?  How else could a genetic change occur?  This seems like semantics trickery.  :)

I'm merely trying to be thorough. Though I appreciate it may be a bit much to take in all at once, there are other mechanisms that can alter genes (endogenous retroviruses, for instance).

Quote
The arms race thing doesn't sound all that believable but interesting.

The arms race thing is happening right now. Haven't you heard of "superbugs" in hospitals?

Quote
I wouldn't expect most of the Darwin evolution scientists to concede IC is legit so I will have to examine their arguments.

Despite what you may think, scientists generally do not summarily disregard claims out of hand if there's good reason to take them seriously. If IC were legit, then there'd be good evidence for it, people like Ken Miller wouldn't be stomping on the bits.

Quote
Many of the arguments are much more advanced then your average person can understand with no knowledge of DNA and genetics and biochemistry so they could be saying a lot of false things but it could sound good.

The thing about peer-reviewed scientific research is that if people start making stuff up that isn't backed by the available data, they're likely to get caught, because you are going to have a lot of people poring over that data who know their stuff.

Conversely, the thing about sites that claim to "critique" evolutionary Theory, which have declarations of faith on their Websites that amount to "if anything in the scientific body of knowledge conflicts with Scripture, toss out the science", is that they don't do peer-review of their claims, they stand by claims even after they have been mercilessly and repeatedly debunked, they don't publish refutations or retractions, and they don't care that their claims are false because their target audience is generally not that scientifically literate, and not even in a position to fact-check such claims, even if they were likely to do so.

Such sites serve one purpose and one purpose alone: to keep the sheep in line. To say they are incredible to anyone outside the bubble of their worldview would be a vast understatement.

Quote
So in the end it comes down to who your average non-biochemist  trusts more.

Science is not a cult. You have the choice to educate yourself, and not accept things on authority. Exercise that vaunted free will and stop looking to us to hand you answers on a plate. It really is your call.

Quote
I think in a general sense the IC observation  is a blow to evolution theory

Look, DrTesla, let's get one thing clear so that hopefully you'll stop repeating this phrase "I think... I think...." as if it means anything or anyone here should give a damn.

Science is not a democracy. Your opinion, shorn as it is of any scientific literacy whatsoever, is worth precisely jack.

You have it in your power to educate yourself, if you really care about this stuff. You can equip yourself with the tools to sort out what's true from what's false. You can learn biology.

If you don't care about this stuff enough to learn about it, then you risk continuing to be deceived by charlatans who do not have your best interests at heart and want you to remain a sheep forever, and no amount of us talking to you is going to do you the slightest bit of good. You'll just be a pawn in a game over which you have no control.

If that's how you want to live your life, fine. Farewell, peace be with you, may whatever spirits you perceive as guides gude you, have a nice life, and don't let the door hit you on the way out.

It is, entirely, your choice. You can choose to educate yourself, which actually requires some work on your part, or you can sit here and whine that it's all too hard to understand and you don't trust those pesky evolutionists to tell you the truth. In doing so, you're actually being exceptionally rude to everyone here, because what you're actually saying, between the lines, is that you don't trust anything we say, which essentially means that we're all wasting our time bothering to try to explain anything to you at all and there's no point in continuing this discussion further.

Quote
and I've seen Darwin people  acknowledging it is an obstacle in both direct and indirect ways.

And I've seen a lot of claims such as this one that, when subjected to inquisition, disappear in a puff of smoke. So needless to say, I don't believe you either.

Quote
I have not seen you address the bacteria flaggelum example

Oh for crying out loud. Now I am inclined to wonder if you're just lying or being a jerk for shits and giggles. I gave you a YouTube video in which Ken Miller debunked it. There is no way you could possibly have missed the presence of that embedded video.

Quote
or the eye example of IC as they propose it.

Do us all a favour and type these two words into Google: "eye evolution".
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 05:46:48 PM

Things that humans design and make, whether cars, or tools, or computer programs, or whatever, are not irreducibly complex.  They are designed to be taken apart and put back together, so you can maintain them or replace broken components.  Indeed, they're designed to be taken apart and put back together, at least by people who know what they're doing, and often it is possible to remove parts from something and still have it perform its designed function.

Yet, you and other people who think irreducible complexity has actual standing as an observation and a basis for the intelligent design argument claim that certain organs are so "irreducibly complex" that they can't be taken apart and still fulfill their designed function.  Indeed, if you attempt to treat something like an eye or a bacterial flagellum as if it were a machine, you'll just end up with a mess that can never be put back together.  That means that despite the fact that our experience in designing things does not give any credence to irreducible complexity, people like you try to insist that it must have significance when it comes to biological organisms - that some Great Designer in the Sky put those organs together (even though we actually can't take them apart) and then try to use the fact that you can't take them apart as if they were a machine as 'proof' that they were designed, even though this would be an insanely stupid way to actually design things.

So, do you have an answer for this?

My thoughts:

Humans design things with the capacity for repair because we know we aren't perfect and they'll actually need repair. Which is certainly an intelligent way to do things.

An intelligent designer of everything, on the other hand, has a much greater capacity to design things that do not require repair.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 05:57:04 PM

why can't a creator have created many beings with shared physical traits?




But a better answer turns the question back to you. Why on earth would one do so? This is where it always breaks down for me - if your hypothesis is right, then that looks like evidence of a creator that is deliberately trying to hide itself from it's creation. Why would it do so? Doesn't that point toward a creator that does not want to be acknowledged if it's going to such lengths to hide it's involvement?

Look at it this way: A master craftsman creates a series of fine furniture pieces over, say, a 6 day period.[1] He makes intricately carved chairs, tables, wardrobes, bookshelves, cabinets. The level of design was incredible, each article of furniture unique in its function and appearance. So intricate the design and so varied the features of these fine pieces of furniture that you would seriously struggle to ever look at them and realise that they were all from the one master craftsman. A justifiably proud man, the craftman guards against this threat to his renown by using the same teak in his construction, harvested from the same forest and growing nowhere else. His furniture is now easily recognisable as his.

I can't agree that similarities in all life is evidence of a creator hiding itself. Quite the opposite.


Edited to add: we might be talking about ID in different ways. I'm speaking more of the ID religious movement, and I think you are speaking more of your personal beliefs. Clarify?

Its correct to assume that I am always looking at things from my personal beliefs, which you know well.

Edited to add a bit more context at the start
 1. He was a hard worker. So hard, he really needed a rest the next day.

But this does nothing to explain why it would create the resulting confusion that multiple organisms with similar traits has created. That's the hiding I was referring to - it looks like contradictory evidence. God created everything (I grant that you, thankfully, are not trying to insist that change has not occurred), made little tweaks, improvements and upgrades periodically, then left humans to draw erroneous conclusions that would lead us to decide that God did not exist at all.


I don't accept that God created the confusion. Multiple organisms with similar traits suggests commonality of origin and the bible explains that commonality. Dissatisfaction with that explanation (at risk of over-simplifying mans thirst for knowledge) has led to alternate explanations. The alternateb explanation is now in conflict with the first, but only because we went looking for an alternate. So who created the confusion?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 06:18:41 PM
Sounds to me like you expect the moderator to kind of coddle you and force people to respond to you.  I am not puppet on a string.
I expect you to be a decent human being and not blow off question after question after question that I keep drawing your attention to.  It isn't even that you didn't answer some of the time - I know there's lots of people talking to you - it's that I kept bringing it to your attention, and you kept ignoring it.

Quote from: DrTesla
I think that I have answered you numerous times and you don't accept it.
I gave you a smite because this is pretty much a lie.  You never did answer the question I wanted you to answer, and trying to claim you did is very offensive.

Quote from: DrTesla
Now, I will try to review your post, if that guy does't ban me which seems somewhat unlikely unless I misperceived the tone of his post,  but I am probably going to take a break for a bit because I need to eat and do some things and I have been posting on here for a bit.
You won't get banned, most likely.  What's more likely if you keep blowing stuff off is that your forum access will be restricted to the "Emergency Room", where you will be required by moderators to fulfill certain requirements if you want full access to the forum restored to you.  I don't know what they are because they differ depending on the person, and I'm not on the admin team anyway.  And it takes a while before they take that step anyway.

Quote from: DrTesla
I don't think you are more important than anybody else on here so it isn't legit to single out one person that I must respond to.  Sounds like you are the moderator's pet on here or something.
Statements like this are insulting as well as offensive.  I have a strong argument against irreducible complexity, which you were basically ignoring, while at the same time you kept claiming that irreducible complexity was the Achilles heel of evolutionary theory and you were claiming that other people had to answer you regarding irreducible complexity.  Do you see the problem now?

Quote from: DrTesla
To be honest I don't want to respond to you now because I've been goaded by people on here to do so which seems to be elevating you to a postion that you don't have over me or any person.   You are not source authority on this issue and I don't think this issue is going to be resolved one way or another on the internet forums.     I will try to set aside my ego but I almost feel like I will be banned if the moderator decides the answer is not good enough in some way.  Sometimes internet forums aren't free speech forums, depending on the approach of the website.   I thought there would be more people skeptical of evolution on here because they refer to it as an addictive discussion but if you don't have people who disagree it isn't much of a discussion but rather a validation exercise.
The problem is, the arguments that you keep presenting against evolution are ones that have already been answered on this forum, and usually repeatedly.  Now, if you were actually listening to people and answering them, instead of just repeating yourself and assuming that their disagreement was due to them somehow not understanding you, that would be a different story.

Also, the reason you've been being 'goaded' to reply to posts is because you keep ignoring them as if the person will go away if you keep ignoring them.  You did it to One Above All, and you did it to me.  All you had to do with OAA was say, "no, I don't want to debate you", and it would have answered him (he might not have liked it, but you would have answered him).  Instead, you basically kept ignoring him to the point where several other people started bringing it up.  And as for me, all you had to do was give me an answer of some kind.  Even something as simple as, "I don't really know for sure" would have been better than what you actually did.  Instead, you kept ignoring me to the point where a moderator stepped in.

You can't just ignore people when they start pressing you for an answer on something.  Oh, I suppose you can, but it's a good way to get them mad at you and to start pushing you to answer them, because it's rude and arrogant.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Graybeard on October 20, 2013, 06:30:09 PM
I don't accept that God created the confusion. Multiple organisms with similar traits suggests commonality of origin and the bible explains that commonality.

First, welcome back and I appreciate your avatar that reminds us all of [wiki]David Holland[/wiki].

Next, it is the degree of commonality, isn't it? Dogs weren't always dogs. Horses not always horses Whales were land-dwellers. There is somewhere on the site, that huge picture of the evolutionary tree - Yes, it is stylised but it wasn't plucked from thin air.

I think we have to agree that, when life originated it was pretty basic but it has had a lot of time to adapt by fortunate changes to be able to exploit food sources - and it has done.

Quote
Dissatisfaction with that explanation (at risk of over-simplifying mans thirst for knowledge) has led to alternate explanations. The alternative explanation is now in conflict with the first, but only because we went looking for an alternate. So who created the confusion?

I liked the "So who created the confusion?" I was about to rep you for humour, but I had the horrible thought that you might be serious.

Joke:
A guy goes to the psychiatrist, and the psychiatrist gives him a [wiki]Rorschach Test[/wiki] The psychiatrist shows him the first and asks him what it reminds him of.

"A huge pair of tits!"
The psychiatrists nods and shows him the second
"A naked woman bending over."
The psychiatrists nods and shows him the third.
"Oral sex".

This carries on for a while and the psychiatrist says, "Well, I think I know the answer, you're obsessed with sex...

The man replies, "That's rich! Who's got all the dirty pictures?

The point is, that Darwin et al made everything easier to understand. Before there was confusion and now we can't deny that the confusion has been lifted and the phrase "evolutionary advantage" is known to us all. You can't say that the evolutionist has all the "dirty pictures."

Anyway, if the Bible is to be believed the earth's flat and a flood covered it, and nobody believes that.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Graybeard on October 20, 2013, 06:38:50 PM
Ok sounds like you want to ban me if I don't dance for you.   Am I wrong?
Yes. You are wrong.

For future reference, if a Mod bold+green or an Admin bold+red makes a request of someone, it is not usual to write a screed about the request. The response is either "OK" or, "You will never see me again." : )

GB Mod
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on October 20, 2013, 06:42:40 PM
On the subject of intelligent design and irreducible complexity. Wouldn't an intelligent designer be irreducibly complex? He/she/it couldn't possibly have evolved.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 06:44:25 PM
My thoughts:

Humans design things with the capacity for repair because we know we aren't perfect and they'll actually need repair. Which is certainly an intelligent way to do things.

An intelligent designer of everything, on the other hand, has a much greater capacity to design things that do not require repair.
I appreciate your thoughts on the subject, magicmiles.  I am still hoping DrTesla will answer the point I raised, but I'm more than happy to engage with you in the meantime.

There are problems with this outlook.  The one I'm going to talk about in this post is that humans are anything but perfect and thus very often have built-in 'defects' as well as a serious need for 'repair'.  There are a huge number of potential problems that we can suffer from, not to mention serious injuries, and there's no easy way to heal those problems.  Someone born with poor eyesight was stuck with it for most of human history, for example, until we figured out that curving glass in certain ways could help correct certain kinds of vision problems.  But even then, other kinds were irreparable for most of human history.  It's only very recently that we've managed to come up with ways to deal with more serious vision problems (such as cataracts, or people who are born without a working cornea).

I speak of this from personal experience.  My eyes started degenerating when I was five or so.  Before I was twenty, my vision without correction in both eyes was worse than 20/1000.  That means that if I was looking at something 20 feet away, it was as if a person with normal eyesight was looking at something a thousand feet away.  Yes, I could see normally with glasses, but I had no peripheral vision whatsoever.  Even as little as 50 years ago, I would have had to wear glasses all my life.  A thousand years ago, I would have been out of luck unless I happened to be born to a rich family which could hire servants to help me deal with my vision problems.  I wouldn't have been able to learn to read or write, either, because those both require working vision.

As it was, I was lucky enough to be born during a time when they actually had figured out how to surgically implant artificial lenses in the eyes.  That gave me near-normal vision.  And even with it, I still have issues relating to the surgery.  If I rub my eyes too much, I can damage the clamps that hold the lens in place which knocks it out of place.  I had that happen once - and it was awful.  Imagine having half of one eye's vision at normal, and the other half at 20/1000.

And I'm just one of millions of people worldwide who have vision problems of some kind or another, which is a very small subset of all the built-in physical problems that are common to humans.  And almost invariably, we have to come up with ways to overcome these problems; not an intelligent designer, us.  My point is, please don't try to tell me that this is the best some "intelligent designer" could do, to leave so many 'bugs' in humans and not making any real effort to do anything about them.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: shnozzola on October 20, 2013, 06:47:05 PM
Interesting, if scary... (perhaps terrifying?)   gallup poll

Quote
PRINCETON, NJ -- Forty-six percent of Americans believe in the creationist view that God created humans in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years. The prevalence of this creationist view of the origin of humans is essentially unchanged from 30 years ago, when Gallup first asked the question. About a third of Americans believe that humans evolved, but with God's guidance; 15% say humans evolved, but that God had no part in the process.

(http://content.gallup.com/origin/gallupinc/GallupSpaces/Production/Cms/POLL/mtmhrggv0u278tchtddptw.gif)

http://www.gallup.com/poll/155003/Hold-Creationist-View-Human-Origins.aspx

Edit - I apologize, I added the American info - I wanted to make certain folks new it was an American poll - unfortunately, sadly, obvious?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 07:38:49 PM

Many of the arguments are much more advanced then your average person can understand with no knowledge of DNA and genetics and biochemistry so they could be saying a lot of false things but it could sound good.    So in the end it comes down to who your average non-biochemist  trusts more.    I think in a general sense the IC observation  is a blow to evolution theory and I've seen Darwin people  acknowledging it is an obstacle in both direct and indirect ways.   

I have not seen you address the bacteria flaggelum example or the eye example of IC as they propose it.

It does not come down to who your average Joe trusts. It comes down to scientific evidence. Ignorance does not win arguments.

Second, you are being dishonest here. I have already told you that every stage in the evolution of the eye still exists in various animals today. The false claim about the bacteria flagellum being irreducibly complex was disproved years ago. There is no such thing as irreducible complexity. Dishonesty does not win arguments.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 09:09:50 PM

Many of the arguments are much more advanced then your average person can understand with no knowledge of DNA and genetics and biochemistry so they could be saying a lot of false things but it could sound good.    So in the end it comes down to who your average non-biochemist  trusts more.    I think in a general sense the IC observation  is a blow to evolution theory and I've seen Darwin people  acknowledging it is an obstacle in both direct and indirect ways.   

I have not seen you address the bacteria flaggelum example or the eye example of IC as they propose it.

It does not come down to who your average Joe trusts. It comes down to scientific evidence. Ignorance does not win arguments.

Second, you are being dishonest here. I have already told you that every stage in the evolution of the eye still exists in various animals today. The false claim about the bacteria flagellum being irreducibly complex was disproved years ago. There is no such thing as irreducible complexity. Dishonesty does not win arguments.

As far as what theory a non-biochemist believes, it does come down to who they trust from a general premise standpoint because they aren't going to grasp all the fine details.   That was my point.   I doubt most people who agree with evolution know much more about it than they were taught it was Science in high school, therefore it is Science.   They've never questioned it independently. 

You've made two claims that I'm wrong/dishonest and claimed x was proved and y was disproved but obviously many scientists disagree with that or we wouldn't be talking about it now.   They have not proven how the bacteria flagellum and eye  evolved unless speculation counts now. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 09:14:29 PM
Interesting, if scary... (perhaps terrifying?)   gallup poll

Quote
PRINCETON, NJ -- Forty-six percent of Americans believe in the creationist view that God created humans in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years. The prevalence of this creationist view of the origin of humans is essentially unchanged from 30 years ago, when Gallup first asked the question. About a third of Americans believe that humans evolved, but with God's guidance; 15% say humans evolved, but that God had no part in the process.


I think this is a pretty good result considering people are only taught the evolution theory in high school science classes.   It shows people are more independent and thinking for themselves rather than accepting some something simply because it is in a science textbook.   If evolution had been proven, nobody would be debating it just as we don't debate Newton's laws of motions and other science. 

I think the result is somewhat misleading though but even many of the evolution supporters go for the idea that God created us through evolution so if you include them it might actually be higher percentrage than those who believe God created us directly. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 09:21:17 PM
My thoughts:

Humans design things with the capacity for repair because we know we aren't perfect and they'll actually need repair. Which is certainly an intelligent way to do things.

An intelligent designer of everything, on the other hand, has a much greater capacity to design things that do not require repair.
I appreciate your thoughts on the subject, magicmiles.  I am still hoping DrTesla will answer the point I raised, but I'm more than happy to engage with you in the meantime.

There are problems with this outlook.  The one I'm going to talk about in this post is that humans are anything but perfect and thus very often have built-in 'defects' as well as a serious need for 'repair'.  There are a huge number of potential problems that we can suffer from, not to mention serious injuries, and there's no easy way to heal those problems.  Someone born with poor eyesight was stuck with it for most of human history, for example, until we figured out that curving glass in certain ways could help correct certain kinds of vision problems.  But even then, other kinds were irreparable for most of human history.  It's only very recently that we've managed to come up with ways to deal with more serious vision problems (such as cataracts, or people who are born without a working cornea).

I speak of this from personal experience.  My eyes started degenerating when I was five or so.  Before I was twenty, my vision without correction in both eyes was worse than 20/1000.  That means that if I was looking at something 20 feet away, it was as if a person with normal eyesight was looking at something a thousand feet away.  Yes, I could see normally with glasses, but I had no peripheral vision whatsoever.  Even as little as 50 years ago, I would have had to wear glasses all my life.  A thousand years ago, I would have been out of luck unless I happened to be born to a rich family which could hire servants to help me deal with my vision problems.  I wouldn't have been able to learn to read or write, either, because those both require working vision.

As it was, I was lucky enough to be born during a time when they actually had figured out how to surgically implant artificial lenses in the eyes.  That gave me near-normal vision.  And even with it, I still have issues relating to the surgery.  If I rub my eyes too much, I can damage the clamps that hold the lens in place which knocks it out of place.  I had that happen once - and it was awful.  Imagine having half of one eye's vision at normal, and the other half at 20/1000.

And I'm just one of millions of people worldwide who have vision problems of some kind or another, which is a very small subset of all the built-in physical problems that are common to humans.  And almost invariably, we have to come up with ways to overcome these problems; not an intelligent designer, us.  My point is, please don't try to tell me that this is the best some "intelligent designer" could do, to leave so many 'bugs' in humans and not making any real effort to do anything about them.

Human body actually has a much longer shelf life than most machines that humans create.  It is also a much more complex machine than anything we can build.    You guys keep insisting it is not that "intelligent" of a design simply because it there are errors in the genetic code from time to time  but intelligent design is referring to the fact that is a complex machine consistently of complex structures and systems that appear as though they are designed.   Just because a genetic mutation happen does not mean it is not an amazingly complex machine that requires billions of processes to work together to sustain life. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 09:27:44 PM
On the subject of intelligent design and irreducible complexity. Wouldn't an intelligent designer be irreducibly complex? He/she/it couldn't possibly have evolved.

That is a valid observation but you are conflating an implication of the theory, that there is a "intelligent designer" aka God,  with the  IC theory itself.   If irreducible complexity demonstrates that Darwian evolution via random mutations and natural selection is false, as Darwin himself proposed, then if we prove IC occurs,  then the Darwiani evolution theory must be false regardless if we do not know who could have created our creator.    But it also doesn't mean that there couldn't have been some other natural process outside of Darwin's proposed mechanism  to account for irreducible complexity.

I am curious,  do people on here deny that any structure or system can be irreducibly complex,  or do you only deny that Darwinian evolution can't result in in IC systems?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 09:38:41 PM
http://www.discovery.org/scripts/viewDB/filesDB-download.php?command=download&id=697

Dr. Behe, who I gather is the Darwin equivalent godfather of Intelligent Design,  responds to the assertions by the judge in the school board trial  at that link.

He seems to make logical arguments and he appears to have the right degrees so I think it is hard to make him out as a quack of some sort.  He doesn't sound like a Jerry Falwell , Pat Robertson type.   

Behe makes the point that the Darwinian evolution theory people argue that indirect evolution could have lead to irreducibly complexity but that is a big improbability,  and Behe even made the point that is possible but not probable in his book.     They don't appear to even argue that direct evolution could lead to the development of a complex system.  If they conceded direction evolution does not lead to IC, it appears they have effectively conceded the argument to the intelligent design crowd,  given the improbability of indirection evolution.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 09:53:58 PM
Human body actually has a much longer shelf life than most machines that humans create.
Not relevant.  There is no functional reason that we couldn't make machines which lasted as long as or longer than the human body does.  Indeed, humans have made things that have lasted much longer than the length of a human life.

Quote from: DrTesla
It is also a much more complex machine than anything we can build.
Also not relevant.  Complexity does not mean that something was designed.

Quote from: DrTesla
You guys keep insisting it is not that "intelligent" of a design
No, we're insisting that it isn't a design, period.  You have to show that it was in fact designed by someone before the question of how 'intelligent' a design it is is pertinent.

Quote from: DrTesla
simply because it there are errors in the genetic code from time to time
"From time to time"?  Tell that to all of the human beings who suffer from issues related to the way the human body functions.  I'm willing to bet that there isn't a single human alive who doesn't suffer from something related to human functionality at some point in their lives.  And this is from a creator who is supposedly much better than human craftsmen, given how you keep insisting that the complexity of the human body means something.

Quote from: DrTesla
but intelligent design is referring to the fact that is a complex machine consistently of complex structures and systems that appear as though they are designed.
This is the core problem with the intelligent design argument.  The fact that something appears as though it was designed does not mean it actually was designed.  You have to show actual evidence of design, and saying, "well, it sure looks like it was designed" isn't enough.  I mean, take something that actually is designed.  It's possible to show the places where it was machined (cut, smoothed, etc), the individual parts that were made to fit together, the fastenings that hold it together, and so on.  You can show evidence - real, solid evidence that passes scrutiny -  that it was made, rather than just coming together spontaneously.

Quote from: DrTesla
Just because a genetic mutation happen does not mean it is not an amazingly complex machine that requires billions of processes to work together to sustain life.
It also doesn't mean it's a machine at all.  Which is the point you keep missing.  You have to prove that it actually is a machine, that it actually was designed, etc.  Repeatedly insisting that it is doesn't actually mean anything.

Let me reiterate, when humans design things, we make them so that we can take them apart and put them back together, so that we can make repairs, changes, and upgrades if need be.  Even cheap stuff only made to last a year can still be taken apart, repaired, and maintained, simply because it had to be put together to begin with.  Given that the only experience we have with design is our own, it's not reasonable to talk about intelligent design and then insist that our own experience with design isn't relevant.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 10:18:58 PM
Human body actually has a much longer shelf life than most machines that humans create.
Not relevant.  There is no functional reason that we couldn't make machines which lasted as long as or longer than the human body does.  Indeed, humans have made things that have lasted much longer than the length of a human life.

Quote from: DrTesla
It is also a much more complex machine than anything we can build.
Also not relevant.  Complexity does not mean that something was designed.

Quote from: DrTesla
You guys keep insisting it is not that "intelligent" of a design
No, we're insisting that it isn't a design, period.  You have to show that it was in fact designed by someone before the question of how 'intelligent' a design it is is pertinent.

Quote from: DrTesla
simply because it there are errors in the genetic code from time to time
"From time to time"?  Tell that to all of the human beings who suffer from issues related to the way the human body functions.  I'm willing to bet that there isn't a single human alive who doesn't suffer from something related to human functionality at some point in their lives.  And this is from a creator who is supposedly much better than human craftsmen, given how you keep insisting that the complexity of the human body means something.

Quote from: DrTesla
but intelligent design is referring to the fact that is a complex machine consistently of complex structures and systems that appear as though they are designed.
This is the core problem with the intelligent design argument.  The fact that something appears as though it was designed does not mean it actually was designed.  You have to show actual evidence of design, and saying, "well, it sure looks like it was designed" isn't enough.  I mean, take something that actually is designed.  It's possible to show the places where it was machined (cut, smoothed, etc), the individual parts that were made to fit together, the fastenings that hold it together, and so on.  You can show evidence - real, solid evidence that passes scrutiny -  that it was made, rather than just coming together spontaneously.

Quote from: DrTesla
Just because a genetic mutation happen does not mean it is not an amazingly complex machine that requires billions of processes to work together to sustain life.
It also doesn't mean it's a machine at all.  Which is the point you keep missing.  You have to prove that it actually is a machine, that it actually was designed, etc.  Repeatedly insisting that it is doesn't actually mean anything.

Let me reiterate, when humans design things, we make them so that we can take them apart and put them back together, so that we can make repairs, changes, and upgrades if need be.  Even cheap stuff only made to last a year can still be taken apart, repaired, and maintained, simply because it had to be put together to begin with.  Given that the only experience we have with design is our own, it's not reasonable to talk about intelligent design and then insist that our own experience with design isn't relevant.

Didn't you make the point that intelligent design should have been designed to account for the need to repair various things, like human designs?   You are just assuming that the human body has no way of repairing itself but I think things like the immune system kind of dispute that, and I think I read that somehow DNA or the RNA (I know very little about DNA so don't cruxify me on this) can repair genes that are out of sequence,  or something like that.   That sounds like a built in repair process if it is true.  We haven't invented a machine that can repair itself that I know of, at least at a complex level. 

    I didn't make my observations about the complexity of the human body to prove intelligent design in that comment, but only to point out that intelligent design does not mean there are no errors ever, it is speaking to the complexity of the structures/processes and how mulitiple things have to work together to sustain life.  If you think about all the number of processes and systems that must fulfill their function to sustain life, then you begin to be amazed at how there are not more genetic flaws lead to various disorders / diseases.    Look at it this way,  the more moving parts that a machine has,  the greater probability that it will experience defects and failure sooner.   And lifeforms have billions more moving parts, so to speak and most humans have no serious disorder or disease until later in life as wear and tear diminishes functions of various organs and systems.  :)

Isn't the clotting mechanism after you cut yourself  kind of a built in repair process?   Your bones fuse bake together after you break them. 

The fact we have brains is the biggest repair mechanism of them all because that is how we discover cures for disease, etc including brain diseases (hopefully, in the future).   

My point isn't to prove intelligent design here,  it is to  make a logical case  that Darwin's theory of natural selection coupled with random mutations could not lead to irreducible complexity.     YOu keep trying to grade me on the false premise that I am not proving intelligent design but I am not even trying to.   I am trying to disprove Darwinism.     
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on October 20, 2013, 10:30:43 PM
On the subject of intelligent design and irreducible complexity. Wouldn't an intelligent designer be irreducibly complex? He/she/it couldn't possibly have evolved.

That is a valid observation but you are conflating an implication of the theory, that there is a "intelligent designer" aka God,  with the  IC theory itself.   If irreducible complexity demonstrates that Darwian evolution via random mutations and natural selection is false, as Darwin himself proposed, then if we prove IC occurs,  then the Darwiani evolution theory must be false regardless if we do not know who could have created our creator.    But it also doesn't mean that there couldn't have been some other natural process outside of Darwin's proposed mechanism  to account for irreducible complexity.

Anything is possible. Do keep in mind that we are saying that evolution is the best explanation we have so far. Your desire to diss is into oblivion and replace it with slack-jawed awe is failing because you have nothing to show for these ideas except your amazement. Yea, if you want to ignore all of the scientific responses to tails and moths and such, you can justify your stance. But keep in mind that people who remain voluntarily stupid about scientific issues sort of undermine the intelligent design thing by demonstrating ignorant design instead.

Quote
I am curious,  do people on here deny that any structure or system can be irreducibly complex,  or do you only deny that Darwinian evolution can't result in in IC systems?

I doubt that you're curious about anything, but I'll answer anyway. You are using strong language when you use the word "deny". Because denial isn't what we're about. We are looking at all available evidence, and seeing nothing that indicates that any function of any living thing is irreducibly complex. Were we to find evidence of something that stumped science to such a degree that other explanations needed to be found, then we would shrug out shoulders and see where such an inquiry went.

But right now you are reading the claims of a small group or two (we can tell because you are bringing up the old standard arguments, like moths and tails and eyes, and nothing new, because they have nothing new), and you are acting like they are authorities because you agree with what they say. In another recent post you brought up the good Dr. Behe. Yes, he makes claims that you think are wonderful. But the percentage of scientists who disagree with evolution and think that things like ID and IC, or creationism in some cases, are legitimate, is about 3% of all scientists. Including Dr. Behe. You are choosing to stick with the 3% for whatever reason, while the rest of us are quite happy with the hundreds of thousands of scientists who keep finding things that back up the claims of evolution.

At one point, the very ID-ish Discover Institute bragged that it had the signatures of 700 scientists who supported ID. In response, the National Center for Science Education got over 1200 scientists named Steve or Stephanie to sign a petition in support of evolution. Easily. It was done as a joke, but if your side is outnumbered by Steve's, you should rethink your position.

You need to realize that just because your WOW-Meter goes off every time you look at a rotating flagellum, that doesn't mean that the only explanation is the one you like best. You also need to realize that saying "Darwinism" with lots of phlem flying out of your mouth is sort of a dead giveaway you have major prejudices against science that doesn't say what you want it to say.

We don't deny anything. We are open to other possibilities, if they can be shown to have validity. To this point, none have. You need to go find something that is actually irreducibly complex, not something that you were told is IC, by people with no interest in the truth. I always tell the flood believers that all they have to do is go out and find a human fossil amongst all the dinosaur bones, or an older species dinosaur buried in shallower ground than a younger species under it. That would disprove the geologic record and go a long ways towards showing that the flood actually happened. In your case, you need to go find some biological mechanism that indeed is IR. So IR that even we agree with you. But this made up crap isn't going to cut it.

Oh, and based on your last post, if you want to disprove what you spittingly call Darwinism, you also have to disprove all the science that has been done since his. The guy was coming up with this stuff over 150 years ago, and he ended up being wrong about some of the stuff that came up later (like Lamarckism) but he didn't have the scientific tools that we have now. He came up with an idea that explains pretty much everything we see today. He didn't bat a thousand, but he batted pretty high, and the scientists following him have built an incredibly strong case for evolution. The fact that you don't like it is not quite enough to overturn the whole thing.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 10:39:16 PM


Many of the arguments are much more advanced then your average person can understand with no knowledge of DNA and genetics and biochemistry so they could be saying a lot of false things but it could sound good.

They have not proven how the bacteria flagellum and eye  evolved unless speculation counts now.

So why do you pretend to understand evolution?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 10:39:51 PM
I don't accept that God created the confusion. Multiple organisms with similar traits suggests commonality of origin and the bible explains that commonality.

First, welcome back and I appreciate your avatar that reminds us all of [wiki]David Holland[/wiki].

Next, it is the degree of commonality, isn't it? Dogs weren't always dogs. Horses not always horses Whales were land-dwellers. There is somewhere on the site, that huge picture of the evolutionary tree - Yes, it is stylised but it wasn't plucked from thin air.

I think we have to agree that, when life originated it was pretty basic but it has had a lot of time to adapt by fortunate changes to be able to exploit food sources - and it has done.

the degree of commonality isn't hugely relevant to the point I'm trying to make, and I am about the least qualified person I know to be able to discuss the intricacies of adaptation. I am a Science dunce.



Before there was confusion and now we can't deny that the confusion has been lifted and the phrase "evolutionary advantage" is known to us all. You can't say that the evolutionist has all the "dirty pictures."

I'm not at all certain that evolutionary theory was driven by confusion. Isn't it truer to say that a lot of scientific discovery has come about by people wanting to better understand how the created world worksed? And in the process, a lot has been discovered about these processes, and gradually the belief has grown that the processes originated naturally, not supernaturally. This is where the conflict begins

Your dirty picture analagy is amusing but I don't feel that it fits this particular discussion very well.
 
Anyway, if the Bible is to be believed the earth's flat and a flood covered it, and nobody believes that.

I'll let that one go through to the keeper for fear of edging to slip. I just don't have the scientific base to get into it beyond my personal convictions.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 10:44:31 PM


Many of the arguments are much more advanced then your average person can understand with no knowledge of DNA and genetics and biochemistry so they could be saying a lot of false things but it could sound good.

They have not proven how the bacteria flagellum and eye  evolved unless speculation counts now.

So why do you pretend to understand evolution?

Darwin did not understand DNA and genetics because scientists had not uncovered that yet.   He also just assumed that structures in lifeforms were all reducibly complex  based on this ignorance of molecular biology.    By your logic, he could not pretend to understand evolution yet millions of people who subscribe to his theory to this day.    It does seem like a bit of confirmation bias how everything in DNA/ genetics arena just somehow supports Darwin's theory when he knew nothing about DNA.   That is some good luck right there.   :)

I don't think anybody on here is a WIzard of Smart on DNA and genetics and biochemistry.   SOme of you have been citing examples of variation withing a species, which nobody disputes,   with speciation  yet they say I don't know anything.    I think on a general level,  we can see the logic of the irreducible complexity argument and how it presents a problem for the Darwin evolutionary theory and again,  Darwinists have admitted both directly and indirectly that it presents a problem.   

In my opinion, if you have really studies biology, you should be in awe of how complex the human body or any organism and you would think it impossible that such a complex body with billions of complex parts and processes resulted  from an unguided process featuring random mutations and natural selection.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 20, 2013, 10:48:40 PM
My point is, please don't try to tell me that this is the best some "intelligent designer" could do, to leave so many 'bugs' in humans and not making any real effort to do anything about them.

I wasn't making the point that an intelligent designer would necessarily make all things perfectly, rather that an intelligent designer may theoretically be  better placed to do this than any human designer. It would of course vary based on the actual intelligence of the intelligent designer. Or it might even vary based on a combination of the intelligent designers intelligence and cockiness/confidence.

You and most people on the thread know what I actually believe, of course, so I don't need to bore you with a discussion on why things aren't in fact perfect.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 11:04:50 PM


In my opinion, if you have really studies biology, you should be in awe of how complex the human body or any organism and you would think it impossible that such a complex body with billions of complex parts and processes resulted  from an unguided process featuring random mutations and natural selection.

Your opinion is of no importance because you don't understand the subject.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on October 20, 2013, 11:13:05 PM
In my opinion, if you have really studies biology, you should be in awe of how complex the human body or any organism and you would think it impossible that such a complex body with billions of complex parts and processes resulted  from an unguided process featuring random mutations and natural selection.

My bold

We know what your opinion is. But your opinion doesn't count. My opinion doesn't count. It is my opinion that I should never have to die, and that I should get to remain 35 forever. The latter worked for a about year, over a quarter of a century ago. Its been downhill ever since.

Opinions are fine. We all have them. But they are hardly proof of anything.

And "think it impossible"? Crap, most everything I see seems impossible. The size of the universe, the age of our planet, weather patterns, chemical reactions, earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanos, that some people think that brussels sprouts are edible. But thinking that something is impossible doesn't make it go away.

You don't like what Darwin said. Do you think that the biologists and others whose work supports evolution are any less capable than chemists, medical researchers, geologists, physicists, astronomers, etc.? Do you think that the study of evolution is some big conspiracy, aimed at something dangerous, or is it just a bunch of wrong-thinkers who have banded together to make your life miserable?

Science has responsible responses to each of the IC and evolution issues you have brought up. Answers that are consistent with the rest of science. I'm sorry that you don't like them. Because you wouldn't believe how much more pleasant life is when you don't have to expend energy on pretense.

Edit: for clarity
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 20, 2013, 11:33:34 PM
In my opinion, if you have really studies biology, you should be in awe of how complex the human body or any organism and you would think it impossible that such a complex body with billions of complex parts and processes resulted  from an unguided process featuring random mutations and natural selection.

My bold

We know what your opinion is. But your opinion doesn't count. My opinion doesn't count. It is my opinion that I should never have to die, and that I should get to remain 35 forever. The latter worked for a about year, over a quarter of a century ago. Its been downhill ever since.

Opinions are fine. We all have them. But they are hardly proof of anything.

And "think it impossible"? Crap, most everything I see seems impossible. The size of the universe, the age of our planet, weather patterns, chemical reactions, earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanos, that some people think that brussels sprouts are edible. But thinking that something is impossible doesn't make it go away.

You don't like what Darwin said. Do you think that the biologists and others whose work supports evolution are any less capable than chemists, medical researchers, geologists, physicists, astronomers, etc.? Do you think that the study of evolution is some big conspiracy, aimed at something dangerous, or is it just a bunch of wrong-thinkers who have banded together to make your life miserable?

Science has responsible responses to each of the IC and evolution issues you have brought up. Answers that are consistent with the rest of science. I'm sorry that you don't like them. Because you wouldn't believe how much more pleasant life is when you don't have to expend energy on pretense.

Edit: for clarity

I don't think Darwinism is a conspiracy, I think it is conjecture that is not supported by fact and isn't logical when you think about the probabliy that random events would result in highly complex lifeforms with billions of complex parts and processes. 

It hasn't made my life miserable.

I could use this kind of empty rhetoric and direct it at you , replacing evolution with intelligent design.  Do you think it is about making your life miserable  or a conspiracy, etc?    So you could stop wasting time with this kind of generic rhetoric that don't even attempt to refute me and in a civil way.   

People with true intellectual curiousity don't shout down people for theories that go against the conventional wisdom.  In fact, almost all the famous scientists in history went against the conventional wisdom and that is why we know them by name.   People like Behe are needed because there are already scores of people trying to support evolution,  so it is good if somebody is out there looking for alternative explanations.    A good scientist wants his theories to be challenged,  in fact, he relishes in it and the opportunity to explain his theories and he doesn't look down on people for this.

Evolution is one of these topics where people say there is a consensus of scientists whosupport it,  thus  it is settled science  despite no proof of cross species evolution.    Science isn't up to a vote b//c then things like the earth is flat would still be around. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 11:33:52 PM
Didn't you make the point that intelligent design should have been designed to account for the need to repair various things, like human designs?  You are just assuming that the human body has no way of repairing itself but I think things like the immune system kind of dispute that, and I think I read that somehow DNA or the RNA (I know very little about DNA so don't cruxify me on this) can repair genes that are out of sequence,  or something like that.   That sounds like a built in repair process if it is true.
Actually, I brought up the point that we design machines to be taken apart and put back together for, among other things, repair and replacement.  Also upgrades and simple maintenance.  But really, the basic point was that they could be taken apart because they had to be put together in the first place.

Yes, the human body does have the ability to heal itself to a degree, to maintain itself to a degree, etc.  But that isn't the same thing as what I was referring to.  Even if we eventually build self-repair and self-maintenance functions into machines of the future (and we will, almost certainly), that won't eliminate the need to be able to take a machine apart and put it back together again.  To be able to reduce them to basic components and then put them back together again so they'll function properly.  You can't do that with a human body.

Quote from: DrTesla
I didn't make my observations about the complexity of the human body to prove intelligent design in that comment, but only to point out that intelligent design does not mean there are no errors ever, it is speaking to the complexity of the structures/processes and how mulitiple things have to work together to sustain life.  If you think about all the number of processes and systems that must fulfill their function to sustain life, then you begin to be amazed at how there are not more genetic flaws lead to various disorders / diseases.
Naturally, intelligent design doesn't mean that something is without mistakes.  See the Ford Pinto for a perfect example of spectacularly bad "intelligent" design.  But the mistakes and flaws we see in organisms are those that fit with them having evolved naturally, rather than what we'd expect based on our experience fixing flaws in human designs.  That is to say, things that were necessary at an earlier stage of evolution, and thus got conserved (and spread to various descendants), but aren't necessary now, but aren't detrimental enough to wipe themselves out of the gene pool.

Quote from: DrTesla
Isn't the clotting mechanism after you cut yourself  kind of a built in repair process?   Your bones fuse bake together after you break them.
Yep, but both are things that would happen in natural evolution, for the simple fact that organisms that did not have them would be much less likely to survive long enough to reproduce.

Quote from: DrTesla
The fact we have brains is the biggest repair mechanism of them all because that is how we discover cures for disease, etc including brain diseases (hopefully, in the future).
Oh, for crying out - the human brain is not a repair mechanism.  The human brain is heuristic - it has the ability to learn and improve itself.  That does not make it a "repair mechanism".  Indeed, the human brain is the one organ in the body which doesn't possess any real capacity for self-repair.

Quote from: DrTesla
My point isn't to prove intelligent design here,  it is to  make a logical case  that Darwin's theory of natural selection coupled with random mutations could not lead to irreducible complexity.     YOu keep trying to grade me on the false premise that I am not proving intelligent design but I am not even trying to.   I am trying to disprove Darwinism.
Okay, stop and think about that for a moment.  Your goal is to disprove 'Darwinism' (I assume you mean evolutionary theory) with something that you not only haven't proven and that nobody has proven, but that you aren't even interested in trying to prove.  Do you not see the basic, fundamental problem with your argument?

Science is about using observations to come up with workable explanations for why things are.  Trying to falsify evolutionary theory is one thing (I may not agree with you, but it is your prerogative), but trying to do so with something you aren't sure is accurate and that you aren't willing to take the time and effort to find out whether it is?  That doesn't fly; it's neither scientific nor logical to disprove something without evidence that you're sure of, and the way it sounds, you're not only not sure about intelligent design and irreducible complexity (aside from the claim that they're logical, which has nothing to do with whether they're valid or supported by evidence), you don't particularly care if they are either.

Science is about finding things that are supported by reality and then trying to explain why that is.  It is not about trying to claim that something isn't supported by reality while using 'evidence' that you aren't even sure is accurate.  That is why you're finding such a cold welcome here.  What, did you think that just because you thought intelligent design and irreducible complexity made sense to you, that they must be the way things actually happened?  What we think is true very often has no bearing on what actually is true.

Why do you think scientists have to spend so much time and effort learning to overcome their own biases?  It's because those biases often lead them to make serious mistakes in reasoning.  That's the lesson you need to spend some time contemplating, and if the only thing you come away from this whole discussion with is that you can't trust what you think is right unless you check it against reality, then you will have accomplished something very meaningful.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 20, 2013, 11:48:28 PM
I don't think Darwinism is a conspiracy, I think it is conjecture that is not supported by fact and isn't logical when you think about the probabliy that random events would result in highly complex lifeforms with billions of complex parts and processes.
Look, just stop for a moment and think about what you're saying.  Do you really think a conjecture that isn't supported by fact and isn't logical would have survived for the 150+ years since Darwin originally came up with the theory of evolution?  Do you really think that the biologists who have used evolutionary theory for all that time wouldn't have recognized that it was merely conjectural, that it wasn't supported by evidence?  Because that's what you're saying here.  That the people who disagree with you are so stupid and ignorant that they were and are incapable of noticing these so-called 'flaws' in the theory of evolution.

Haven't you realized that if it really were nothing but unsupported, illogical conjecture, it never would have lasted long enough to become a theory in the first place?  That's how science works.  The only things that last long enough to be called theories are the things that are well-supported by facts, observations, and experimental evidence.  There is no way that evolution would have gotten any traction whatsoever in science if it were this unsupported illogical conjecture you seem to think it is.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 20, 2013, 11:56:35 PM


I don't think Darwinism is a conspiracy, I think it is conjecture that is not supported by fact and isn't logical when you think about the probabliy that random events would result in highly complex lifeforms with billions of complex parts and processes. 



Earlier in the thread you said Darwinism was a proxy war, now you don't think it is a conspiracy.

You said DNA had nothing to do with evolution, then you said DNA was necessary to understand evolution.

You said you know nothing about evolution, but you criticise people who know more than you do.

At one moment you say you could be wrong, elsewhere you tell everyone what "must" be the answer.

I gave you an explanation about the evolution of the eye, then you said the subject had not been discussed.

Have you considered that the reason you don't think evolution is logical, is because you don't think in a logical way yourself?

At the moment I am not sure if you are purposely dishonest (which I assumed above) or you have an erratic mentality. Do you have any compulsive habits such as locking the door ten times by any chance?

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 08:04:25 AM
It does seem like a bit of confirmation bias how everything in DNA/ genetics arena just somehow supports Darwin's theory when he knew nothing about DNA.   That is some good luck right there.   :)

Or instead of "luck" it could be that Darwin read the evidence available to him very well and got it right!
It seems a bit mean and underhand for you to undermine Darwin and evolution in the very same sentence as you admit the evidence from different fields does support the same conclusion.  Are you somehow saddened or diminished by that trend - that it all ads up?  Why?

I think on a general level,  we can see the logic of the irreducible complexity argument and how it presents a problem for the Darwin evolutionary theory and again,  Darwinists have admitted both directly and indirectly that it presents a problem.   

Please name some of these "Darwinists" and give us the opportunity to read what they actually said.  I've not read any "Darwinists" in despair over any problem of complexity.  From what I read they relish complexity - they love to figure it out.   


In my opinion, if you have really studies biology, you should be in awe of how complex the human body or any organism and you would think it impossible that such a complex body with billions of complex parts and processes resulted  from an unguided process featuring random mutations and natural selection.

You are right to be in "awe", and wrong to be thinking any of us here are not in awe.  I find it a little insulting actually.

Here you've used the terms "unguided processes" and "natural selection" in the same sentence to describe how you think the theory of evolution works.  You've contradicted yourself  :police:  Do you see that?  Can you now please find the humility to admit you have it wrong ... so your mind can be unlocked to learn something?

Not only do you not understand the theory of evolution, you are also demonstrating a lack of understanding of the basic concepts of probability theory.  Your statistics is shoddy.  You are thinking that all the "billions of complex parts" had to come together in one roll of the dice.  That's not the correct application of statistics to this problem.  What you have in evolution is thousands, even millions, of opportunities to test and reject or add single improvements. The probability of adding each incremental improvement is enormously high!  That's exactly why evolution WORKS!  Evolution is micro-evolution.

Dawkins wrote (words to the effect) that if you confront a shear cliff face from the bottom it might seem impossible to climb - but if you walk round the back of it up the gentle slope you can easily get to the top taking one little step at a time.  This is what the fossil record reveals about speciation - sum up all the fossils that have plugged the so-called "missing links" and you have a clear progression.  It has been shown thousands of times over - so much so that it's almost boring.  And this is also exactly what genetic sequencing confirms.

Of course you are completely free to carry on denying complexity and speciation through evolution, no real problem for anyone there, science will plod on without you. But there is one sad part - that your version of "awe" is flawed.  Impoverished for lack of knowledge.  You're like a grown up refusing to let go of a belief in the tooth fairy because you can't figure out how those dollar coins appeared while you slept.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 21, 2013, 09:05:23 AM
<snipped for length>
Quote
I don't accept that God created the confusion.
Well technically, neither do I.
Quote
Multiple organisms with similar traits suggests commonality of origin
Yes, it certainly does...
Quote
and the bible explains that commonality.
in what way does the Bible explain it? I'm honestly not sure what you are referring to and trying not to make any assumptions without input from you.
Quote
Dissatisfaction with that explanation (at risk of over-simplifying mans thirst for knowledge) has led to alternate explanations.
Actually, I don't think that's how it happened at all. I think it was the result of observations, over a long period of time, of how the world works, which led to seeking better explanations. You could potentially present the argument that those observations led to the search for explanations that fit the observations, but I don't think you'll have much success selling the idea that it was dissatisfaction with the biblical explanation that started the search.
Quote
The alternateb explanation is now in conflict with the first, but only because we went looking for an alternate. So who created the confusion?
People who wanted to know how the world works. Lucky for us that they did, or we'd still treat sickness with leeches and exorcisms. The evidence is there for anyone who wants to examine it for themselves.

Like here: http://humanorigins.si.edu/resources/intro-human-evolution
And here: http://humanorigins.si.edu/evidence

A lot of (easy to understand for non-science people) information is available at both links. You're welcome to sat goddidit, but I find the scientific evidence compelling, mostly because, well, it's actual evidence.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 21, 2013, 09:34:48 AM
DrT - You're trying to disprove natural selection. And you've been shown repeatedly why you cannot do so.

Are you at all familiar with selective breeding, used by ranchers and farmers all over the planet? Breeding for specific traits that they want to be more prevalent in their herds? The exact same process, but with no intervention from humans - natural selection. Breeding occurs, traits are passed on - this is basic biology. If selective breeding works (and it does) then what's the disconnect in your brain that makes you believe that natural selection is impossible?

Do you understand that constraints on mating (limited stock to mate with for instance) lead to a weaker herd? If a wolf herd, for example, gets isolated from any new members, eventually the herd will die off entirely, because there is no variation in the genetic material, and weaknesses breed true along with strengths. Look: http://www.isleroyalewolf.org/ and here: http://www.isleroyalewolf.org/overview/overview/at_a_glance.html . They are debating if new breeding partners should be brought in, or if the wolves should be allowed to die off - and the consideration is due to human intervention disrupting the natural migrations in the first place.

Did you bother to actually read any of the posts from noodsforme written to you about evolution? If so, you would have a better grasp of how wrong you are, and why I can say that with a great deal of confidence.

You're arguing against something with a metric sh!t ton of evidence to back it up. You don't understand what you are arguing against, because you showed up with an agenda (to win an online argument about irreducilbe complexity) and you were completely unprepared to find debaters who know the subject better than you do. I don't know where you got the idea, but I suspect one of your god's representatives held a class of some sort, or had a very engrossing sermon on the topic, and you thought you could take on a group of people who you have been led to believe are lacking in intelligence.

Looks like you were wrong on a number of points.

Edit:clarifying who I was speaking to
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Graybeard on October 21, 2013, 10:08:03 AM
In my opinion, if you have really studies biology, you should be in awe of how complex the human body or any organism and you would think it impossible that such a complex body with billions of complex parts and processes resulted  from an unguided process featuring random mutations and natural selection.


0/10 - see me after class. It is clear that you have not been listening at all. Please read this before you do: http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,25452.msg575555.html#msg575555

Here is the corrected version:

In my opinion, if you have really studied biology, you should be in awe of how complex begin to understand the human body or any other organism and you would think it impossible realise that such a complex body with billions of complex parts and processes has, in fact, resulted  from an unguided process featuring random mutations and natural selection, such as we see in all living organisms.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 11:03:10 AM
In my opinion, if you have really studies biology, you should be in awe of how complex the human body or any organism and you would think it impossible that such a complex body with billions of complex parts and processes resulted  from an unguided process featuring random mutations and natural selection.


0/10 - see me after class. It is clear that you have not been listening at all. Please read this before you do: http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,25452.msg575555.html#msg575555

Here is the corrected version:

In my opinion, if you have really studied biology, you should be in awe of how complex begin to understand the human body or any other organism and you would think it impossible realise that such a complex body with billions of complex parts and processes has, in fact, resulted  from an unguided process featuring random mutations and natural selection, such as we see in all living organisms.

Ok, I am confused why you "edited" my comments there but that doesn't seem to change the meaning at all.   

Was that a contrived conversation with a Creationist or was that real?  I'm not sure if it is legit for Darwin evolution people to put words in other people's mouths.

It appears to me that you want to reduce my arguments to Creationism which is what Darwin evolution theory people tend to want to do.    My focus is irreducible complexity and how it seems improbable that an unguided process of natural selection coupled with random mutations  leads to complex parts. 
You are conflating a possible implication of a theory with the theory itself.   I am not trying to say IC must prove God, or that the fact the human body is a complex machine with billiions of complex processes required to sustain life  must prove there is a God.  I am saying that it tends to cast doubt on neo-Darwinian evolutionary theory as the origin of life and we need to consider other natural mechanisms, or even an intelligent designer, depending on your comfort zone.   

If seems like if you start out with the pre-conclusion that there cannot be an intelligent designer or "God" , then you aren't truly approaching it a scientific way.  But nobody has every said  IC  proves there is a God,  all it does is present an obstacle to the traditional evolutionary theory.   
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 11:15:55 AM
DrT - You're trying to disprove natural selection. And you've been shown repeatedly why you cannot do so.

Are you at all familiar with selective breeding, used by ranchers and farmers all over the planet? Breeding for specific traits that they want to be more prevalent in their herds? The exact same process, but with no intervention from humans - natural selection. Breeding occurs, traits are passed on - this is basic biology. If selective breeding works (and it does) then what's the disconnect in your brain that makes you believe that natural selection is impossible?

Do you understand that constraints on mating (limited stock to mate with for instance) lead to a weaker herd? If a wolf herd, for example, gets isolated from any new members, eventually the herd will die off entirely, because there is no variation in the genetic material, and weaknesses breed true along with strengths. Look: http://www.isleroyalewolf.org/ and here: http://www.isleroyalewolf.org/overview/overview/at_a_glance.html . They are debating if new breeding partners should be brought in, or if the wolves should be allowed to die off - and the consideration is due to human intervention disrupting the natural migrations in the first place.

Did you bother to actually read any of the posts from noodsforme written to you about evolution? If so, you would have a better grasp of how wrong you are, and why I can say that with a great deal of confidence.

You're arguing against something with a metric sh!t ton of evidence to back it up. You don't understand what you are arguing against, because you showed up with an agenda (to win an online argument about irreducilbe complexity) and you were completely unprepared to find debaters who know the subject better than you do. I don't know where you got the idea, but I suspect one of your god's representatives held a class of some sort, or had a very engrossing sermon on the topic, and you thought you could take on a group of people who you have been led to believe are lacking in intelligence.

Looks like you were wrong on a number of points.

Edit:clarifying who I was speaking to

Ok but isn't selective breeding, which I think is also called artifiical selection,  just leading to variation within a species?  I don't think there is cross species evolution taking place there.   Nobody denies natural and artificial selection can produce variation with a species.   I think that was well understood before Darwin proposed that natural selection coupled with random mutations could lead to cross species evolution.   

THis is not really related but it seems like selective breeding or artificial selection (if that is the right term for it) is much more efficient than natural selection in producing a beneficial change within a species because it is planned,  there is a goal in mind beforehand. 

I've never pretended to be an expert on anything.  I am not trying to prove anything,  I am just stating what I think about the topic.   I don't think this issue is going to be decided by people talking about it on the internet so why be so serious about it.   Just pretend we are in college  in our dorm rooms and we are just talking about stuff.     I would have to be getting paid to want to prove anything  and I would need to go back to college to study biochemistry and genetics, etc.     I read one of these scholarly papers by Behe last night dealing with something about cellular proteins and it was like trying to read a foreign language.   
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 11:20:48 AM
...how it seems improbable that an unguided process of natural selection ...

We are struggling with the word: "unguided".

Natural selection is a non-random process that shapes a gene pool towards greater fitness. That is actually a form of guiding.
The survival test of the environment is a brutal guide - with amazing results.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 21, 2013, 11:22:10 AM


I've never pretended to be an expert on anything.  I am not trying to prove anything, I am just stating what I think about the topic.   I don't think this issue is going to be decided by people talking about it on the internet so why be so serious about it.   Just pretend we are in college  in our dorm rooms and we are just talking about stuff.     I would have to be getting paid to want to prove anything  and I would need to go back to college to study biochemistry and genetics, etc.     I read one of these scholarly papers by Behe last night dealing with something about cellular proteins and it was like trying to read a foreign language.

Really? Did you not say you were you trying to prove Darwin was wrong, a moment ago?

I am sure you will pretend to be an expert in your following posts.

I am trying to disprove Darwinism.   
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 21, 2013, 11:24:10 AM
You know, I (and others) would stop bringing up this debate if you just said "Yes, One Above All, I wish to debate you", or "No, One Above All, I do not wish to debate you".

DrTesla, I will keep smiting you for ignoring this, and I advise my fellow members to do the same every time you ignore them.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 11:27:19 AM
...how it seems improbable that an unguided process of natural selection ...

We are struggling with the word: "unguided".

Natural selection is a non-random process that shapes a gene pool towards greater fitness. That is actually a form of guiding.
The survival test of the environment is a brutal guide - with amazing results.

It means it was not pre-planned, it just happens in nature.

I thought some neo-Darwinists had begun to drop the survial of the fitness aspect of the theory to some degree.  I haven't had time to research that in more detail. 

But, nobody disputes that natural selection occurs with in species. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 21, 2013, 11:30:01 AM
What mechanism do you propose to prevent accumulated changes from culminating in a different species?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: screwtape on October 21, 2013, 11:32:58 AM
My focus is irreducible complexity

Hi.  Your focus is misplaced.  Irreducible complexity is a fiction imagined by creationists with no basis in fact.  This has been explained to you several times, yet you persist.  You admit you are no expert, yet when people who have a much better grasp of this topic than you refute your points, you argue rather than update your beliefs.

Why?  What is wrong with you?  Are you even willing to consider that IR is wrong?


Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 11:33:27 AM
It means it was not pre-planned, it just happens in nature.

Why do you have a problem with this?  When the machinery is so elegant and well understood?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 11:33:41 AM
You know, I (and others) would stop bringing up this debate if you just said "Yes, One Above All, I wish to debate you", or "No, One Above All, I do not wish to debate you".

DrTesla, I will keep smiting you for ignoring this, and I advise my fellow members to do the same every time you ignore them.

You posted a Nastygram next to the negative Darwin (which could be considered a Behe perhaps? :) )   that essentially wished sterilization upon me.    I wish to respond to as many people as I can because people have different points and many of them are logical points so it isn't fair for me to jsut debate one person on here.   I think for the most part I've responded to everybody's points but there might be incidences that somebody makes a point that I have no considered and I might not have a good response to it until I "research" stuff a little more.    If somebody makes a point that I don't respond to and people see it as a good point, they are free to take my lack of a response as evidence that I lost on that point and advantage Darwin.   That is fair enough.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 11:38:17 AM
It means it was not pre-planned, it just happens in nature.

Why do you have a problem with this?  When the machinery is so elegant and well understood?

I'm not sure what your point is.  I don't have a problem with natural selection coupled with random mutations leading to irreducible complexity.   I just don't think it does based on the previous observations that have been discussed.    Again, I haven't ruled out other unguided non-pre planned natural processes as the solution to IC.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on October 21, 2013, 11:39:41 AM
DrT

Let me try it this way. You are saying that you recognize that genetic variation within a species occurs. What do you think keeps a species variation limited so that the offspring can continue to procreate only with others of the same species? If millions of years are available to create variation, what forces stop those changes from being so drastic that they prevent the resulting critters or plants from mating with others of the original species? In other words, what is it the keeps new species from being developed by the process?

Here is the dictionary definition of a species: a group of animals or plants that are similar and can produce young animals or plants : a group of related animals or plants that is smaller than a genus.

If variation is possible, and we both say that it is, what keeps that variation limited? So that millions of years later all offspring from the original are still of the same species? What limits all variation to things like fur color or whatever and never touches physical differences that would make interbreeding with the original animal impossible?

We have fossil evidence that the ancestors of hippos and whales split from a single species and went on their merry way, some becoming big blundering mammals with legs and such floating around in the rivers of Africa, others became swimming mammals in the oceans. Complete with tiny and useless vestigial legs in their tails. You think that is impossible. Why? Where tdo the limits you are claiming come from?

For reference to the hippo/whale thingy, see this: http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/article/evograms_03

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 21, 2013, 11:43:59 AM
You posted a Nastygram next to the negative Darwin (which could be considered a Behe perhaps? :) )   that essentially wished sterilization upon me.

Wrong.
I just said not to reproduce. You'd be doing the world a favor if you followed my advice.

<snip>

I'll take that as a "no". I also take it you have a serious problem with answering questions. I hope you're never in the witness stand. You'd be thrown in jail for contempt in seconds.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 11:50:08 AM
My focus is irreducible complexity

Hi.  Your focus is misplaced.  Irreducible complexity is a fiction imagined by creationists with no basis in fact.  This has been explained to you several times, yet you persist.  You admit you are no expert, yet when people who have a much better grasp of this topic than you refute your points, you argue rather than update your beliefs.

Why?  What is wrong with you?  Are you even willing to consider that IR is wrong?

yes, I am willing to consider it is wrong but I don't see how natural selection plus random mutations  accounts for IC.   If somebody can describe how it works then i am happy to change my mind on it.  I'm not wed to any theory.   

Are you sure you understand what IC is and why these scientists think it presents a problem for Darwin evolutionary theory? 

Is anybody here truly an expert on this stuff?   I think we are all pretty much laymen on it.   I've researched it more than your average person who doesn't think much about these kinds of topics on his or her own in their free time.   I am essentially trying to summarize arguments of scientists like Behe who are qualified to talk about these subjects.   If I have mischaracterized his arguments in any way, let me know.

I think trying to conflate Creationism with intelligent design is a debate trick.   I made this point before, but the Creationist piggyback on the intelligent design scientists,  because they think there is a certain implication of the theory,  that there is a God.    They care about that implication of the theory but the intelligent design people still have to make scientific arguments to support the theory itself.     Behe makes the point that a lot of scientists wanted to dispute the Big Bang Theory because they thought the implication of the theory would be that there is a God,  even though there was scientific evidence of the Big Bang.   I think those scientists even tried to prevent the big bang from being discussed in science books.

We shouldn't let a possible implication of a theory which might seem like nuts prevent us from considering the theory itself.  That is a what I call a false or artificial constraint.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 11:55:21 AM

I'll take that as a "no". I also take it you have a serious problem with answering questions. I hope you're never in the witness stand. You'd be thrown in jail for contempt in seconds.

Well I tried to make this point yesterday.  Some of you are acting like this is an interrogation and I am up on the witness stand rather than just a friendly discussion.   I have committed no crime.    I just think this Behe guy has a legit point about IC.   If he's a dumb dude,  then that doesn't say much for the rest of us.   
  I have tried to answer questions/points that people make on here.   Look at all the people that I have responded to, including several people numerous times.    I think some of the points don't really even address my points but I have even replied to some of those. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 11:59:09 AM
I'm not sure what your point is.  I don't have a problem with natural selection coupled with random mutations leading to irreducible complexity. 

Whaaaat!?  Is that a typo or yet another self-contradiction.

What you wrote reduces the "irreducible" :?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 21, 2013, 12:01:11 PM
Well I tried to make this point yesterday.

Which didn't answer a thing. You didn't say "no" and you didn't say "yes". My taking your answer as a "no" is because I sensed cowardice. Cowards always back away.

Some of you are acting like this is an interrogation and I am up on the witness stand rather than just a friendly discussion.   I have committed no crime.

This is a discussion forum. If you want to chat, stay in the Chatter section or go to another forum.
In addition, you might want to check the rules you agreed to (but clearly didn't read) when you signed up. You've broken several of them.

I just think this Behe guy has a legit point about IC.   If he's a dumb dude,  then that doesn't say much for the rest of us.

No clue who Behe is, nor do I care. If he's into IC, then, by definition, he's a moron.

I have tried to answer questions/points that people make on here.   Look at all the people that I have responded to, including several people numerous times.    I think some of the points don't really even address my points but I have even replied to some of those. 

I offered you a way out from being overwhelmed. You didn't accept it, so now you have no business whining about it.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 12:03:41 PM
I'm not sure what your point is.  I don't have a problem with natural selection coupled with random mutations leading to irreducible complexity. 

Whaaaat!?  Is that a typo or yet another self-contradiction.

What you wrote reduces the "irreducible" :?

lol, this seems like a gotcha.  but many Darwin scientists suggest that a indirect evolution can lead to IC,  which Behe himself said is possible but not probable in his book 17 years ago.    It seems Darwin scientists have to prove the indirect evolution leads to IC,  or prove that there is no such thing as IC and everything is reducibly complex.

Does that make sense?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 21, 2013, 12:05:11 PM
Ok but isn't selective breeding, which I think is also called artifiical selection,  just leading to variation within a species? 
Yes, deliberately. Do you understand why the "deliberate" part is meaningful and significant? There are specific traits shared by both organisms that are expected to pass on to the next generation if those two organisms breed. Oftentimes it works as expected - and thanks to science, farmers and ranchers have a great deal of information that can help them create successful selective breeding programs. This does not take a single generation, by the way, these programs are set up to get long term results, another thing you seem to be overlooking. The only difference between selective breeding and natural selection is the deliberate part. Natural selection has no agenda - do you understand that non-benign traits can be passed on as well? Natural selection (traits being passed from one generation to the next) occurs regardless of human intervention - why is this so hard to get? Traits that are neutral or advantageous eventually outbreed those that aren't.
Quote
I don't think there is cross species evolution taking place there.   
Ok halt. You're doing it again. I've asked, repeatedly for you to demonstrate that you know what the ToE says, and you've refused to do so (by ignoring the explicit request). I will not accress anything you say regarding cross-species evolution until I have a reason to beleive that you will understand my reply - so far, you don;t appear to have read most of them. Here's a hint that might make things go a bit easier for you - you are speaking "fundy" which makes me suspect your "knowledge".

Why? Because non-fundies generally do not use the term Darwinian evolution. The only people who seem to use it (and it's relatives) are either fundameltalists or those speaking to fundamentalists (Richard Dawkins uses similar terms when debating for that very reason). Actual scientists would not divide evolution into "this part is one thing and that is another" in normal speech and yes, I know enough actual scientists from work and school to assert that on their behalf. They would be speaking of evolution or of natural selection, not "evolution" and "Darwinian" anything.
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Nobody denies natural and artificial selection can produce variation with a species.   I think that was well understood before Darwin proposed that natural selection coupled with random mutations could lead to cross species evolution.   
I don't believe you know what you are saying.
Quote
THis is not really related but it seems like selective breeding or artificial selection (if that is the right term for it) is much more efficient than natural selection in producing a beneficial change within a species because it is planned,  there is a goal in mind beforehand. 
Well duh. Your point?
Quote
I've never pretended to be an expert on anything.
Nor I.
Quote
I am not trying to prove anything, 
Maybe not anymore....
Quote
I am just stating what I think about the topic.
And ignoring any new information that might at least prepare you to do a better job arguing your position elsewhere!
Quote
  I don't think this issue is going to be decided by people talking about it on the internet so why be so serious about it. 
Agreed, but setting theists straight about science is part of why we are here. Just think of it as a free gift with membership - we're preparing you to avoid sounding like an idiot in real life if you ever find yourself talking to someone who knows how evolution works.

You're welcome.
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Just pretend we are in college  in our dorm rooms and we are just talking about stuff.
I don't need to pretend. I AM a college student, taking two biology classes this semester. I'm taking a test on evolution tonight, remember?
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    I would have to be getting paid to want to prove anything
Interesting. I like knowing what I'm talking about but hey, they're your 24 hours a day, you can waste them any way you want to.
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  and I would need to go back to college to study biochemistry and genetics, etc.     
No, you wouldn't. If you had any interest you could take one of a HUGE number of FREE college course available online to anyone with an internet connection. Like the link I gave you yesterday for a basic biology class offered free from MIT. You could also just admit that you prefer to be given easy answers.
Quote
I read one of these scholarly papers by Behe last night dealing with something about cellular proteins and it was like trying to read a foreign language.
Then take advantage of the wonderful information age we live in and get yourself educated. Google is your friend dude - just look for university course online that are offered by accredited universities - they are abundant.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 21, 2013, 12:07:05 PM
...how it seems improbable that an unguided process of natural selection ...

We are struggling with the word: "unguided".

Natural selection is a non-random process that shapes a gene pool towards greater fitness. That is actually a form of guiding.
The survival test of the environment is a brutal guide - with amazing results.

It means it was not pre-planned, it just happens in nature.

I thought some neo-Darwinists had begun to drop the survial of the fitness aspect of the theory to some degree.  I haven't had time to research that in more detail. 

But, nobody disputes that natural selection occurs with in species.

I can explain why variation within species is no different than the formation of new species. In the desert of the western US there are many lizards. One type of lizard can breed with its neighbour. There is a whole chain of these lizards stretching for miles, each group can breed with its neighbours because they are the same species as their neighbours. Now if you take the lizards at the two ends of the chain they cannot interbreed because they have become different species.

Don't pretend to be an expert and say they are not different species. On any definition they are different species. They have different colours and cannot interbreed.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 12:08:13 PM

I just think this Behe guy has a legit point about IC.   If he's a dumb dude,  then that doesn't say much for the rest of us.

No clue who Behe is, nor do I care. If he's into IC, then, by definition, he's a moron.


not knowing who Behe is kind of seems like me not knowing who Darwin is if the debate is about irreducible complexity and evolutionary theory.  Your argument is basically he's a moron because I don't agree with him.    You've never seen me call Darwin a moron even though I disagree with him. 

Ok, I  have to take off for awhile.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 21, 2013, 12:11:53 PM
not knowing who Behe is kind of seems like me not knowing who Darwin is if the debate is about irreducible complexity and evolutionary theory.

Would you say not knowing who Dawkins is would be the equivalent if the argument were about atheism? Because I had never even heard of him (Dawkins) until I joined the forum, and even then, I don't give a crap about what he says, when it comes to atheism.

Your argument is basically he's a moron because I don't agree with him.

Strawman. My argument is that he's a moron for supporting something that goes against all available evidence.

You've never seen me call Darwin a moron even though I disagree with him. 

Don't care. What you do or don't do doesn't dictate what I can or can't do.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 21, 2013, 12:15:02 PM

I just think this Behe guy has a legit point about IC.   If he's a dumb dude,  then that doesn't say much for the rest of us.

No clue who Behe is, nor do I care. If he's into IC, then, by definition, he's a moron.


not knowing who Behe is kind of seems like me not knowing who Darwin is if the debate is about irreducible complexity and evolutionary theory.  Your argument is basically he's a moron because I don't agree with him.    You've never seen me call Darwin a moron even though I disagree with him.
Sigh. No, it's because IC is nonsense and you've been shown that over and over and over. Perhaps a better explanation is that OAA hasn't bothered to pursue anything further related to the subject as there is no reason to pursue further information about nonsense. that would be a logical interpretation of his post - not the knee-jerk defense you're trying to play.
Quote
Ok, I  have to take off for awhile.
Buh-bye, I'll think of you fondly while I take a test on evo theory tonight.

Edit:formatting
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 12:15:20 PM
I thought some neo-Darwinists had begun to drop the survial of the fitness aspect of the theory to some degree.  I haven't had time to research that in more detail. 

I suggest we stick to plain evolution (which you are having enough problems coming to grips with) before we bring in more nuanced processes explaining minor issues on the fringes of the theory "to some degree".  If you want to deploy red herrings please start new topics on epigenetics, or whatever else you have in mind.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 12:29:24 PM
It seems Darwin scientists have to prove the indirect evolution leads to IC,  or prove that there is no such thing as IC and everything is reducibly complex.

Does that make sense?

No. Why should scientists have to evolve a penis in a test tube to satisfy the goddidit brigade.  When there are more plausible explanations for countless thousands of examples.

If we see a man stranded on the roof of a house and the parts of his ladder broken on the ground, can we not deduce how the man got on the roof?  Or do we have to cower in front of fools who proclaim the man was put on the roof by space aliens?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jdawg70 on October 21, 2013, 12:39:17 PM
DrTesla -

How familiar are you with the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial from 2005, and specifically Dr. Behe's role in it?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 12:43:26 PM
DrTesla -

How familiar are you with the Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial from 2005, and specifically Dr. Behe's role in it?

yeah, I posted Dr. Behe's response to the judge's findings on this thread a few pages back.    I thought he sliced and diced the judge's conclusions but feel free to read it and decide for yourself.     I don't think a judge should be deciding scientific matters though,  and how would it hurt kids in school to hear numerous theories.   I don't think you can argue that his theory is not scientific in nature, even if you think he is just a Creationist with an agenda, which doesn't appear to be true.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 21, 2013, 12:49:40 PM
(this is more of a bookmark)

ParkingPlaces,

Quote
[that] brussels sprouts are edible

Cook them for about 5 minutes (fresh) in already boiling water, remove them. Place in a zip lock bag of melted butter and garlic, with half a teaspoon of whiskey, for about an hour, then eat.

Mmmmm...

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on October 21, 2013, 12:50:00 PM
yes, I am willing to consider it is wrong but I don't see how natural selection plus random mutations  accounts for IC.   If somebody can describe how it works then i am happy to change my mind on it.  I'm not wed to any theory.   

You sure are wed to to this one. Which does not qualify as a theory, but is claimed as one. IC does not exist, but you continue to insist that it does. Some idiots made it up to make themselves sound smarter. But they have provided no evidence that anything is IC. Claims, yes. With evidence? No.

You need to divorce yourself from their ideas and learn to think for yourself. Then you can decide whether or not evolution has any basis in fact without being poisoned by unadulterated crap.

We may still be in the early days of deciphering evolution. We may discover things in the future that makes us rethink the theory, maybe even abandon it. But right now, amongst those who know what they are talking about and who can explain their findings in viable ways, evolution seems to explain why life is the way it is.

Any idea why your intelligent designer keeps changing which species are running around on earth? Why are 95% plus of all species who ever lived extinct? Why did he make the species specific to the Paleozoic period for awhile, then change to the critters that ran around during the Mesozoic period, then change most of them again for the Cenozoic, and on and on til the present? Evolution explains this easily. Can you do as good a job?

edit: fixed some spelling and other errors
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Zankuu on October 21, 2013, 12:51:20 PM
Hi DrTesla,

How is Intelligent Design a theory? How does it make use of the scientific method?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 21, 2013, 12:52:11 PM
I'm not sure what your point is.  I don't have a problem with natural selection coupled with random mutations leading to irreducible complexity.   I just don't think it does based on the previous observations that have been discussed.    Again, I haven't ruled out other unguided non-pre planned natural processes as the solution to IC.
Look, you're being contradictory, and it is causing lots of problems.  First you say you want to disprove Darwinism (a term made up by religious creationists who use it to refer to anything in science that counters their religious beliefs), now you say you don't have a problem with one of the main parts of evolutionary theory explaining this "irreducible complexity", you just don't think it does.  And at the same time, you've said you're not interested in making sure that what you're trying to use to disprove "Darwinism" is itself accurate, even though that's the way science works.

Look, I don't care if you want to disprove evolutionary theory.  You are more than welcome to try for the rest of your life, if you want.  But when you're not willing to do the work needed to actually disprove it (which is not advancing a logical argument against it), it's ultimately just intellectually bankrupt laziness.  If you want to prove or disprove something in science, it takes hard work.  Lots and lots of hard work, often very boring, to find sufficient evidence to support a hypothesis or to find the  error that invalidates it or forces a revision.  Creationism, whether you're talking about the religious variety or something like intelligent design, doesn't usually attempt that work; instead, it focuses on arguments that seem compelling but that have no scientific substance to them.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on October 21, 2013, 12:52:53 PM
(this is more of a bookmark)

ParkingPlaces,

Quote
[that] brussels sprouts are edible

Cook them for about 5 minutes (fresh) in already boiling water, remove them. Place in a zip lock bag of melted butter and garlic, with half a teaspoon of whiskey, for about an hour, then eat.

Mmmmm...

-Nam

Actually, the problem is that DrT's intelligent designer gave about 25% of the human population the unfortunate ability to taste an extreme bitterness when trying to eat brussels sprouts. Which makes them inedible to me no matter how they are fixed. Ain't my fault. The dude can't design sh*t.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jdawg70 on October 21, 2013, 12:53:45 PM
yeah, I posted Dr. Behe's response to the judge's findings on this thread a few pages back.    I thought he sliced and diced the judge's conclusions but feel free to read it and decide for yourself.     I don't think a judge should be deciding scientific matters though,  and how would it hurt kids in school to hear numerous theories.   I don't think you can argue that his theory is not scientific in nature, even if you think he is just a Creationist with an agenda, which doesn't appear to be true.
Sorry - haven't caught up with this thread but was curious.  I'll double-back at some point and have a look.

I agree that a judge should not decide scientific matters, but in the Kitzmiller case, it really wasn't Judge Jones who was making the decision.  He was deferring to the expertise of the scientists that had been involved in the trial.

Also, I don't really need to argue that his theory isn't scientific in nature, as Behe himself made that argument for me:
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn8178#.UmVozECuGZE

Now unless you really want to assert that astrology is also scientific in nature, then you will have to concede that Dr. Behe does not consider 'intelligent design' to be scientific.

It's also difficult to accept that there is no Creationist agenda behind it, based upon a) the Discovery Institute's very blatant religious agenda and b) Dr. Behe's concession that the plausibility of 'intelligent design' is predicated upon belief in the existence of a deity (god).  So I don't know if that really holds water either.

You may have already addressed this, so I apologize if I'm simply speaking out of turn here.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 21, 2013, 01:17:53 PM
yeah, I posted Dr. Behe's response to the judge's findings on this thread a few pages back.    I thought he sliced and diced the judge's conclusions but feel free to read it and decide for yourself.     I don't think a judge should be deciding scientific matters though,  and how would it hurt kids in school to hear numerous theories.   I don't think you can argue that his theory is not scientific in nature, even if you think he is just a Creationist with an agenda, which doesn't appear to be true.
Behe's arguments are not impressive, because he does not answer his critics, instead dodging their rebuttals and moving the goalposts to something new so that he can continue to pretend that his arguments are meaningful.  This behavior is intellectually dishonest and shows that Behe (and by extension, others who argue in the same way) are not interested in a serious and honest attempt to figure out how these things actually work, but are only interested in trying to kill any ideas (except the ones that they've welded themselves to).

As far as Behe's actual response to the Dover verdict, what it really sounds like is him attempting to spin things so that he can continue to claim that intelligent design (and by extension, irreducible complexity) are going concerns (the same sort of intellectual dishonesty he's been engaging in all along).  Except that the only people who still believe this are the ones who have welded themselves to intelligent design and irreducible complexity, or those who are not knowledgeable enough to make an accurate judgment.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: screwtape on October 21, 2013, 01:39:39 PM
yes, I am willing to consider it is wrong but I don't see how natural selection plus random mutations  accounts for IC.

There is no IC.  IC is a fabrication in service of creationists.  That is the point. IC is not real.

I'm not wed to any theory.   

Pardon me, but you seem to be wed to IC theory.

Are you sure you understand what IC is and why these scientists think it presents a problem for Darwin evolutionary theory? 

Yes and I don't see any scientists saying this. At least, not any who are speaking within their own field.  A scientist named Michael Behe came up with the idea of irreducible complexity.  He was forced to admit under oath that he was unable to use it in actual biology, that there were not peer reviewed studies that supported the idea, that he was generally full of beans.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irreducible_complexity#Irreducible_complexity_in_the_Dover_trial
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Behe#Dover_testimony

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Evolutionary biologists have demonstrated how such systems could have evolved, and describe Behe's claim as an argument from incredulity. In the 2005 Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District trial, Behe gave testimony on the subject of irreducible complexity. The court found that "Professor Behe's claim for irreducible complexity has been refuted in peer-reviewed research papers and has been rejected by the scientific community at large."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irreducible_complexity
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irreducible_complexity#Response_of_the_scientific_community

Cripes, man, put forth a little effort on your own.  And by that I mean, understand the holes in your own beloved idea.  Look up Kitzmiller v Dover.  He got his ass handed to him so hard, even the judge commented on it.

Is anybody here truly an expert on this stuff?   I think we are all pretty much laymen on it.

that does not make us all equal in our knowledge.

I've researched it more than your average person

Given your responses, I find that very difficult to believe. 

scientists like Behe who are qualified to talk about these subjects.   If I have mischaracterized his arguments in any way, let me know.

You haven't.  The problem is you are listening to a man who is pushing an idea that was throroughly discredited.  IC is comparable to geocentrism.  If Behe's ideas were meaningful in science or to explain anything, you could do a study and derive data from it.  It would be published and peer reviewed.  But it's not and it hasn't.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 01:57:48 PM
Hi DrTesla,

How is Intelligent Design a theory? How does it make use of the scientific method?

I've only been discussing the observation of irreducible complexity in nature and how evolution does not appear to be able to do that.    This by itself isn't the intelligent design stuff.  IC and ID tend to be conflated sometimes.   I don't know what the intelligent design people say outside of what they have said about IC which I think even Darwinists have admitted is hard to explain with evolution theory.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 21, 2013, 02:11:09 PM
It is so often the case that Christians, theists, and religious people in general attempt what I like to call The Impossibility Argument. Basically, the argument goes something like this:

P1-X phenomena looks intelligently designed
P2-If the likeliness of X occurring w/out a designer is very low then it is impossible without an intelligent designer
P3-Complexity and fragility indicate a designer for X
P4-The occurrence of X shows signs of complexity, fragility, and a low likeliness w/out an intelligent designer
C-Therefore, X is impossible without an intelligent designer


This argument is often used in relation to the origin of the universe "from nothing" in cosmology, the alleged "fine tuning" of cosmological constants in our universe, or common descent (evolutionary common ancestry) in biology. I would like to know your response to it. Is it sound? Why or why not?

I think you make a mistake assuming that anybody who favors the irreducible complexity theory, or intelligent design,  is religious,  or if they are religious, that that they automatically cannot also be scientific and/or logical on any topic.   I think Christians are motivated to believe in intelligent design but they can make non-religious arguments for intelligent design that are logical.    I read the God is Imaginary proofs and they were all logical except for the ones about evolution in which he, or they, appear to  have no skepticism at all.

How do you really dispute the logic that is doesn't seem possible that all these random mutations occurred in such a way to create something useful.  As they argue,  part of an eye is useless,  part of an important cell structure is useless.   Random mutations have no goal yet evolution seems to suggest they can achieve a goal without even having it the first place.   It seems like vision is something that would be have to be thought of in advance of a structure that allows vision.  And this follows billions of times throughout the entire body with various organs and enyzmes and whatever that keeps life viable.  A complex structure like an eye needs all the parts to come together at once and work together,  and evolution can't explain how that happens. 

Now, the God is Imaginary makes the point that if  complexity means there must be a God or a creator, then who created God or creator.     They say this disproves the irreducible complexity argument as regards to life  on earth but does it?      What if something did create the creator of us?   It is only conjecture to assume that nothing could have created something that might have created us. 

I don't think Darwinists have proved their theory anymore than Christians and other religious people have proved there is  a God.   It seems like they conflate natural selection and variation within species with cross species evolution. 

It seems impossible that evolution would result in a man's private parts by random and then female private parts by random and then the sex drive resulted by random chance  and then pregnancy resulted by random chance.    It seems like the plan had to be reproduction from the start for this result to occur.   

Why is reproduction even necessary in terms of survival of the lifeform itself?   It isn't beneficial to the original lifeform from its own survival to produce offspring.   I also have read that the more primitive asexual forms of reproduction are actually more efficient than sexual reproduction in terms of number of offspring so why wouldn't evolution favor that type?

I let this discussion go for quite a while in order to make a prediction, and now I'm going to reel in the OP to display it.

Dr. Tesla, what you have demonstrated here (over and over) is precisely the logical fallacy I noted from the beginning (The Argument from Ignorance/Incredulity Fallacy). Please Google it. You've said numerous times, "It doesn't seem [to me]" that X could occur. This displays not only your complete ignorance of the biological sciences but also your ignorance of rational argumentation and your willingness to continue using logically fallacious arguments to support your assumptions and biases, and I predicted you would do this from the beginning. Simply put, you do not know what is impossible.You merely ASSUME it due to your lack of knowledge of the given subjects (and neither do you know what is improbable since you are also ignorant of the statistics involved). You purposefully misrepresent people's arguments (including what TOE is) while spewing out old previously refuted arguments which are irrational.

THE FACTS:

1. You have already admitted that you have nothing but a high-school level understanding of evolutionary biology
2. You have attempted to use numerous logical fallacies to support your assumptions (including the AFI fallacy from the OP)
3. You have displayed ample Confirmation Bias in your unwillingness to be critical of your assumptions and prejudices (and your dismissal of correction to your errors)
4. Your notion of Irreducible Complexity has been rebutted and refuted, yet you still try to use it (which is intellectual dishonesty)

A CLASSIC EXAMPLE:

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How do you really dispute the logic that is doesn't seem possible that...

You simply don't know what you are talking about. This argument is not "logic". It is illogical (Complex Question fallacy and Argument from Incredulity Fallacy). Do you even know what being logical means? If you are truly interested in finding the truth (if you truly care whether or not your beliefs are true), then you will stop using logical fallacies to support your beliefs. The case and point of the OP stands. You don't know what is impossible regarding new species, common descent, TOE, the origin of life, the origin of the cosmos or anything else - and you should admit your ignorance of it and go take some classes in the related subjects. Come back when you are better educated on evolutionary biology and logic. If you do not, you will continue to get no respect here because you don't know what you're talking about and haven't demonstrated any willingness to learn, grow, question, or think critically about your own biases and assumptions.

It's time to stop reading ID/Creationist websites (which cater to your personal biases) and start educating yourself on the actual science.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Zankuu on October 21, 2013, 02:12:48 PM
I've only been discussing the observation of irreducible complexity in nature and how evolution does not appear to be able to do that.    This by itself isn't the intelligent design stuff.  IC and ID tend to be conflated sometimes.   I don't know what the intelligent design people say outside of what they have said about IC which I think even Darwinists have admitted is hard to explain with evolution theory.

And that's my issue with ID. They point to IC and say "Nobody can explain this! It's so complex" and that's it. There's no scientific backing of any kind. No variables, no hypotheses, no testing of any kind. Sure, I'll grant them it's complex, but I won't make the leap from "It's complex" to "It's designed by an intelligent being(s)" like they are doing.

But hell, I could be wrong and maybe the ID "theory" is backed by science. I haven't seen or heard of anything like that, but if you know of any peer review studies please shoot them my way- I'd be more than happy to read them.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 02:15:13 PM
... about IC which I think even Darwinists have admitted is hard to explain with evolution theory.

I've asked you already to provide the names of these "Darwinists" and the examples, so we can read for ourselves what they said.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 21, 2013, 02:18:04 PM
... about IC which I think even Darwinists have admitted is hard to explain with evolution theory.

I've asked you already to provide the names of these "Darwinists" and the examples, so we can read for ourselves what they said.

DrTesla, I will keep smiting you for ignoring this, and I advise my fellow members to do the same every time you ignore them.

Underline mine.
Just sayin'.

DrTesla, are you also a proponent of ID? If so, why?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Graybeard on October 21, 2013, 02:19:09 PM
Hi DrTesla,

How is Intelligent Design a theory? How does it make use of the scientific method?

I've only been discussing the observation of irreducible complexity in nature and how evolution does not appear to be able to do that.

"I can't understand evolution, therefore it must be a lie. I can understand it if a magic being did it all." Is that your argument? Because if it is, it is rubbish.  You must read this http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,25452.msg575555.html#msg575555 
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This by itself isn't the intelligent design stuff.  IC and ID tend to be conflated sometimes.

This is stupidity, pure and simple. IC and ID are hand in glove. They cannot be separated. You are either purposely trying to deceive people or trying to have them believe your simplistic and erroneous theory or you genuinely know nothing whatsoever about evolution. And yet you are trying to tell people that you are right! You are trying to spread ignorance. You have believed the lies and deceptions of others who are making money out of ignorant people.

My son calls this "The stupidity tax"

Tell us, what else don't you believe? Gravity? Hey, it's only a theory. The kinetic theory of gases? You can't see molecules can you.. so it's obviously caused by demons... or God.

Quote
I don't know what the intelligent design people say outside of what they have said about IC which I think even Darwinists have admitted is hard to explain with evolution theory.

You think that Yale professors have difficulty dismissing IC and ID? Really? That is what you think? OK... go ahead. It probably will not matter too much in your life what you believe but please, do not tell anyone else that IC and ID is true -> it's not. It isn't even science.

For over 4000 years superstitious idiots have been trying to show there are gods. They have failed. In the last 200 years we have progressed beyond our wildest dreams in all of the sciences. From the Wright Brothers to the Moon. From illness is god's punishment to antibiotics and gene therapy. From burning sticks to nuclear power. From believing in Adam and Eve to knowing about evolution but even now there is a huge amount to learn.

And you come here and start trying to give us some bullshit about an invisible fairy poofing things into existence?

What are you like? If Tesla were alive, he would sue you.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wheels5894 on October 21, 2013, 02:25:43 PM
Hi DrTesla,

How is Intelligent Design a theory? How does it make use of the scientific method?

I've only been discussing the observation of irreducible complexity in nature and how evolution does not appear to be able to do that.    This by itself isn't the intelligent design stuff.  IC and ID tend to be conflated sometimes.   I don't know what the intelligent design people say outside of what they have said about IC which I think even Darwinists have admitted is hard to explain with evolution theory.

Come on, Dr Telsa, give us an example of IC to discuss instead of discussing the thing without an example. tell us of a mechanism or part of an organism which you hold to be IC and we can sort it out.

Meanwhile, you mentioned that Michael Behe 'took apart' Judge Jones ruling in the Dover case. Can you say why he didn't do this in the court room during the trial? After the evidence for evolution was presented, the side for ID found there 'expert' witnesses were not willing to give evidence.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Dante on October 21, 2013, 02:28:02 PM
I've only been discussing the observation of irreducible complexity in nature and how evolution does not appear to be able to do that.

I assume you mean explain it? Well, like Uncle screwtape already said, there's no such thing as IC.

However, yes, there are some parts of ToE that have yet to be discovered. That, in and of itself, is no good reason to insert a "godidit" argument.

Time, and time again, using gods as explanations for natural phenomenon have been shown to be the ignorant way to percieve our world. There is not one instance, NOT ONE, where we as humans have been shown that a god is required for the universe to work as it does. NOT ONE!


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This by itself isn't the intelligent design stuff. 

It sooooo is. Quit trying to be deceptive. It's not working.

Quote
IC and ID tend to be conflated sometimes.   I don't know what the intelligent design people say outside of what they have said about IC which I think even Darwinists have admitted is hard to explain with evolution theory.

Bold mine. Do you ascribe that label to any person that accepts the validity of the ToE?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 02:31:11 PM
yeah, I posted Dr. Behe's response to the judge's findings on this thread a few pages back.    I thought he sliced and diced the judge's conclusions but feel free to read it and decide for yourself.     I don't think a judge should be deciding scientific matters though,  and how would it hurt kids in school to hear numerous theories.   I don't think you can argue that his theory is not scientific in nature, even if you think he is just a Creationist with an agenda, which doesn't appear to be true.
Sorry - haven't caught up with this thread but was curious.  I'll double-back at some point and have a look.

I agree that a judge should not decide scientific matters, but in the Kitzmiller case, it really wasn't Judge Jones who was making the decision.  He was deferring to the expertise of the scientists that had been involved in the trial.

Also, I don't really need to argue that his theory isn't scientific in nature, as Behe himself made that argument for me:
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn8178#.UmVozECuGZE

Now unless you really want to assert that astrology is also scientific in nature, then you will have to concede that Dr. Behe does not consider 'intelligent design' to be scientific.

It's also difficult to accept that there is no Creationist agenda behind it, based upon a) the Discovery Institute's very blatant religious agenda and b) Dr. Behe's concession that the plausibility of 'intelligent design' is predicated upon belief in the existence of a deity (god).  So I don't know if that really holds water either.

You may have already addressed this, so I apologize if I'm simply speaking out of turn here.

I don't think Behe says the plausibility of irreducible complexity is based on a belief in God.  I think he says the exact opposite of that.   You can go to the Discovery Institute and they clearly define what they mean by IC.   I think he stated that he personally believes in some type of God but that even if IC makes Darwian evolution theory effectively impossible, that doesn't mean the only alternative is that there is a God or intelligent designer.      He has said there could be other natural mechanisms that we do not understand at this point. 

I believe the judge just agreed with science experts presenting the Darwin side of the case rather than with Behe and other scientists on his side.   A judge agreeing with one side doesn't mean it is settled science.   In his response, Behe clearly demonstrates that the judge didn't understand his points.  If you want to post Behe's responses and show me how he is wrong,  I would def. be interested in reading that.    I think the point he made about how a possible implication to the theory for some peole, that that it proves God exists,  does not mean the theory itself is religious in nature was an excellent point.    He brought up how some people oppose the Big Bang theory because of a possible implication of the theory, that there is a God.  This is despite scientific proof of the Big Bang. 

The New Scientist article seemed extremely biased against Behe, to include quoting one person in the audience making a snide comment about him.   No attempt to get a pro-Behe comment, I suspect.   They don't quote any of Behe's comments in full so you have to rely on them to present Behe's points accurately.   

I think the irreducibly complex aspect should be talk in the classes just as a general criticism of the theory.    This trial might have been looking at the whole Intelligent Design package which I haven't even studied up on yet.    I don't think the IC concept is about astrology at all so they must have been talking about something else. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 02:37:39 PM
I've only been discussing the observation of irreducible complexity in nature and how evolution does not appear to be able to do that.    This by itself isn't the intelligent design stuff.  IC and ID tend to be conflated sometimes.   I don't know what the intelligent design people say outside of what they have said about IC which I think even Darwinists have admitted is hard to explain with evolution theory.

And that's my issue with ID. They point to IC and say "Nobody can explain this! It's so complex" and that's it. There's no scientific backing of any kind. No variables, no hypotheses, no testing of any kind. Sure, I'll grant them it's complex, but I won't make the leap from "It's complex" to "It's designed by an intelligent being(s)" like they are doing.

But hell, I could be wrong and maybe the ID "theory" is backed by science. I haven't seen or heard of anything like that, but if you know of any peer review studies please shoot them my way- I'd be more than happy to read them.

They aren't making that leap, at least with irreductible complexity standing on its own.   They are saying irreducible complexity can't be explained by Darwin evolutionary theory.  You are packaging a possible implication, that there is an intelligent designer,  with the IC concept itself, and then you reject the concept based on a possible implication of the concept, if valid, that you don't like.

You have to separate theories from possible implications of theories. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 02:42:09 PM
They are saying irreducible complexity can't be explained by Darwin evolutionary theory.

And the examples of irreducible complexity proved to be irreducible are ....? :-\
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Zankuu on October 21, 2013, 02:47:44 PM
I think the irreducibly complex aspect should be talk in the classes just as a general criticism of the theory.

DrTesla, there's literally nothing to teach. That's why people have a problem with it being brought into the classroom.


They aren't making that leap, at least with irreductible complexity standing on its own.  They are saying irreducible complexity can't be explained by Darwin evolutionary theory.  You are packaging a possible implication, that there is an intelligent designer,  with the IC concept itself, and then you reject the concept based on a possible implication of the concept, if valid, that you don't like.

You have to separate theories from possible implications of theories.

They are making that leap. You want to separate the two but you can't. Irreducible Complexity first made it's debut in Of Pandas and People, which was originally a creationist book that was later modified with Intelligent Design jargon- ID is new age Creationism.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 02:54:01 PM

"I can't understand evolution, therefore it must be a lie. I can understand it if a magic being did it all." Is that your argument? Because if it is, it is rubbish. 

This is stupidity, pure and simple. IC and ID are hand in glove. They cannot be separated. You are either purposely trying to deceive people or trying to have them believe your simplistic and erroneous theory or you genuinely know nothing whatsoever about evolution. And yet you are trying to tell people that you are right! You are trying to spread ignorance. You have believed the lies and deceptions of others who are making money out of ignorant people.

My son calls this "The stupidity tax"

Tell us, what else don't you believe? Gravity? Hey, it's only a theory. The kinetic theory of gases? You can't see molecules can you.. so it's obviously caused by demons... or God.

You think that Yale professors have difficulty dismissing IC and ID? Really? That is what you think? OK... go ahead. It probably will not matter too much in your life what you believe but please, do not tell anyone else that IC and ID is true -> it's not. It isn't even science.

For over 4000 years superstitious idiots have been trying to show there are gods. They have failed. In the last 200 years we have progressed beyond our wildest dreams in all of the sciences. From the Wright Brothers to the Moon. From illness is god's punishment to antibiotics and gene therapy. From burning sticks to nuclear power. From believing in Adam and Eve to knowing about evolution but even now there is a huge amount to learn.

And you come here and start trying to give us some bullshit about an invisible fairy poofing things into existence?

What are you like? If Tesla were alive, he would sue you.

You are just making appeals to authority arguments with these things about professors at Yale.   Dr. Behe is a professor at Leheigh or whatever it is.  Is that a chump college? 

Most famous scientists that everybody has heard of are the ones who went against the consensus of their day.  Society would not advance very much over time if consensus of the day never gets challenged if it is wrong  and we wouldn't have made many advancements over time  if the initial consensus is always the final one.   

I think ID people need IC,  but you don't have to believe in ID to think the IC observation is legit and an obstacle to evolution theory.  Again, if we prove Darwin evolutionary theory wrong  with the IC concept,  it doesn't mean the only alternative is an intelligent designer. 

How am I spreading ignorance though, anybody reading my comments on here also seem I'm outnumbered like 20 to 1  and they are reading your responses to me which are asserted to be informed and factual.   You make it sound like I have a captive audience and I can somehow prevent criticisms of what I say or what Behe says,  etc.   I am not tyring to prove anything and I have also made it clear that I am not a biochemist.   I'm just a guy on the internet who thought the irreducibly complex argument was interesting.   
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 03:04:34 PM
Ok,  well  I thought this was going to be a discussion.  I am not trying to upset people or "spread ignorance".  I didn't know ignorance was an infectious disease.   I try to keep mine self contained as best I can but who knows.  :)

I don't see why people get so emotional on this origins of life stuff.   You'd think a cure for cancer was in the balance. 

Does anybody know of a website where this topic is discussed but not really tied to a website that has a strong opinion about it one way or another?   I will probably do better in an environment like that because it is more of a discussion amongst equals rather than an inquisition kind of format where some are elevated above others. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Dante on October 21, 2013, 03:05:30 PM
Most famous scientists that everybody has heard of are the ones who went against the consensus of their day.  Society would not advance very much over time if consensus of the day never gets challenged if it is wrong  and we wouldn't have made many advancements over time  if the initial consensus is always the final one.   

True enough, but it's interesting that many of the greatest advances were in direct contradiction to religious beliefs. Flat earths, geocentrism, germ theory and evolution, to name a few.

There's a reason for that.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 21, 2013, 03:07:34 PM

Dr. Tesla,

No, you didn't "just think it [IC] was interesting". You keep presenting IC b/c YOU believe it (and think it refutes current science), yet you refuse to acknowledge it's rebuttals/refutations (which have already been laid out). So how about showing some honesty. YOU go out and find the scientific criticism of IC, properly present them here (with references) and let's discuss them.

Also, please respond to my post on the prior page.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 03:08:34 PM
I think ID people need IC,  but you don't have to believe in ID to think the IC observation is legit and an obstacle to evolution theory. 
But then you need some examples of irreducible complexity for which no alternative evolutionary explanations can be conceived.


I'm just a guy on the internet who thought the irreducibly complex argument was interesting.
Of course it's interesting. (So is Dr Who.)  Show us the systems you consider proven to be irreducibly complex.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Dante on October 21, 2013, 03:12:17 PM
Ok,  well  I thought this was going to be a discussion.  I am not trying to upset people or "spread ignorance".  I didn't know ignorance was an infectious disease.   I try to keep mine self contained as best I can but who knows.  :)

I don't see why people get so emotional on this origins of life stuff. 

Different topic.

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You'd think a cure for cancer was in the balance.

A cure for cancer may very well hang in the balance. The religious proponents would have had us all believe that cancer was either god's will, or the devil's work. It's neither.

Quote
Does anybody know of a website where this topic is discussed but not really tied to a website that has a strong opinion about it one way or another?   I will probably do better in an environment like that because it is more of a discussion amongst equals rather than an inquisition kind of format where some are elevated above others.

I'll bet you think it's we who have the strong opinion, and are incapable of changing our minds. Psst, let me tell you a secret. If you want to find the close minded one, look in the mirror.

I can't speak for everyone here, but I'd be willing to bet large sums of money that well over 95% of atheists here would indeed change our minds, and our worldviews, if we were presented with compelling evidence. Unfortunately, you don't have any. But, could you say the same? Because it's looking like the answer to that is a resounding "No!" Followed closely by "Lalalala" whilst plugging your ears with your fingers.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 21, 2013, 03:23:47 PM
I don't think Behe says the plausibility of irreducible complexity is based on a belief in God.  I think he says the exact opposite of that.   You can go to the Discovery Institute and they clearly define what they mean by IC.   I think he stated that he personally believes in some type of God but that even if IC makes Darwian evolution theory effectively impossible, that doesn't mean the only alternative is that there is a God or intelligent designer.      He has said there could be other natural mechanisms that we do not understand at this point.
Do you even know what you're talking about?  The telelogical argument, argument from design, has been around for thousands of years.  Thomas Aquinas, almost 750 years ago, used it as one of his five major arguments for the existence of God.  William Paley, a Christian apologist and philosopher, used it to argue for 'purpose' in organisms that could only be explained by a designer, God.  Michael Behe himself is a devout Roman Catholic and is following in the footsteps of other Christians who have used the telelogical argument to argue for their beliefs.  It's been presented again, and again, and again, as a theological argument.  Do you really expect anyone to believe that repackaging it as "intelligent design" makes it suddenly not a religious argument, simply because Behe and others who advance it aren't specifically saying that God was the "intelligent designer"?

You know why intelligent design became a thing?  It's because actually trying to teach creationism as science ended up being a total non-starter.  So the same groups who were pushing creationism repackaged it as intelligent design in an attempt to push creationism without actually calling it creationism.  The goal of many of its advocates is to overturn methodological naturalism, the cornerstone of modern science, and replace it with "theistic science" (essentially, protecting their Christian beliefs from scientific inquiry).  When you have a group pushing an agenda like that, it means they're not interested in finding out what's actually true; instead, they just want to validate what they already believe is true.

Quote from: DrTesla
I think the irreducibly complex aspect should be talk in the classes just as a general criticism of the theory.    This trial might have been looking at the whole Intelligent Design package which I haven't even studied up on yet.
Science classes are about presenting what's actually been supported by the evidence.  So, if you think irreducible complexity should be taught in a science class, then you need to show that it's supported by the evidence.  Evidence, not logic.  Logic that isn't based on actual evidence is not reliable because it's not grounded in anything.  It's like building a house without a foundation.

Quote from: DrTesla
I don't think the IC concept is about astrology at all so they must have been talking about something else.
I take it you didn't understand the point of that comparison.  It wasn't to show that intelligent design/irreducible complexity are or were related to astrology (because they're not), it was to show that Behe's definition of a theory was so vague and general that you could define astrology as a scientific theory using it.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 03:30:34 PM
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A cure for cancer may very well hang in the balance. The religious proponents would have had us all believe that cancer was either god's will, or the devil's work. It's neither.

I don't think it is fair to say most religious people think cancer is god's will.  Not all religious people see things the same way  so it is reductionist to state x is what they all believe.  I know one thing, religious people are not anti-cancer research or anti-cancer treatments like radiation and chemotherapy.   You can believe in "God" and not believe he controls what happens to you.   Look at this way,  if your car has a flat, do you say it is the engineer's will who designed the car that your car's wheel went flat?  Of course not, but that is basically what you are saying most religious people do.

To respond to your other argumentation in that last post,  I could really level those same kind of generic and  vague criticisms at you and question your motivations and argue you are close minded if you don't agree with me, etc.  Kind of pointless though and we end up not even debating the actual issue at hand.   

I need to roll out for a bit but I will try to respond to some of the other posts I haven't when I get back.   I need to recharge and prepare myself to be humbled yet again.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Dante on October 21, 2013, 03:38:08 PM

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A cure for cancer may very well hang in the balance. The religious proponents would have had us all believe that cancer was either god's will, or the devil's work. It's neither.

I don't think it is fair to say most religious people think cancer is god's will.  Not all religious people see things the same way  so it is reductionist to state x is what they all believe.  I know one thing, religious people are not anti-cancer research or anti-cancer treatments like radiation and chemotherapy.   You can believe in "God" and not believe he controls what happens to you.   Look at this way,  if your car has a flat, do you say it is the engineer's will who designed the car that your car's wheel went flat?  Of course not, but that is basically what you are saying most religious people do.

But they sure don't hesitate to acclaim god's will for curing them, do they?

My point though, was that religious proponents, working through avenues such as wanting to teach ID and IC in classrooms, are holding back real science. And who knows what discoveries, and what cures and vaccinations, real science will expose?

To respond to your other argumentation in that last post,  I could really level those same kind of generic and  vague criticisms at you and question your motivations and argue you are close minded if you don't agree with me, etc.

You could level them, but that doesn't make them true.

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Kind of pointless though and we end up not even debating the actual issue at hand.   

Because, possibly, you bring no evidence?

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 21, 2013, 03:40:13 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W96AJ0ChboU (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W96AJ0ChboU)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 03:45:28 PM
Look at this way,  if your car has a flat, do you say it is the engineer's will who designed the car that your car's wheel went flat?  Of course not, but that is basically what you are saying most religious people do.

Poor analogy. We know for sure the engineer who designs a car is human.  God on the other is, well ... er ... God, who knows how many hairs are on our heads and feeds us like the birds of the air!
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 21, 2013, 03:48:47 PM

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and the bible explains that commonality.
in what way does the Bible explain it? I'm honestly not sure what you are referring to and trying not to make any assumptions without input from you.
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The bible says God created all living things. Thus, commonality: one creator.


Dissatisfaction with that explanation (at risk of over-simplifying mans thirst for knowledge) has led to alternate explanations.
Actually, I don't think that's how it happened at all. I think it was the result of observations, over a long period of time, of how the world works, which led to seeking better explanations. You could potentially present the argument that those observations led to the search for explanations that fit the observations, but I don't think you'll have much success selling the idea that it was dissatisfaction with the biblical explanation that started the search.
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I accept that
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 21, 2013, 03:51:45 PM
The bible says God created all living things. Thus, commonality: one creator.

That in no way suggests the kind of commonality that Jag was talking about.  One creator could create things in multiple ways.  A perfectly-creating creator would be able to perfectly mould each thing rather than using a less-than-appropriate commonality for multiple things.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: screwtape on October 21, 2013, 03:56:28 PM
I don't think it is fair to say most religious people think cancer is god's will.  Not all religious people see things the same way  so it is reductionist to state x is what they all believe.  I know one thing, religious people are not anti-cancer research or anti-cancer treatments like radiation and chemotherapy.   

For sure this is true of some.  But not all.  And it is religious people who are holding back science.

You can believe in "God" and not believe he controls what happens to you.

Sure.  And you can believe in a happy marriage and still commit adultery. It is a tribute to the ability of the brain to compartmentalize beliefs. 

  Look at this way,  if your car has a flat, do you say it is the engineer's will who designed the car that your car's wheel went flat?  Of course not, but that is basically what you are saying most religious people do.

Engineers aren't omnipotent.  God is.


Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 21, 2013, 03:57:15 PM

 and the bible explains that commonality.


in what way does the Bible explain it? I'm honestly not sure what you are referring to and trying not to make any assumptions without input from you.


The bible says God created all living things. Thus, commonality: one creator.



Dissatisfaction with that explanation (at risk of over-simplifying mans thirst for knowledge) has led to alternate explanations.

Actually, I don't think that's how it happened at all. I think it was the result of observations, over a long period of time, of how the world works, which led to seeking better explanations. You could potentially present the argument that those observations led to the search for explanations that fit the observations, but I don't think you'll have much success selling the idea that it was dissatisfaction with the biblical explanation that started the search.


I accept that
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jdawg70 on October 21, 2013, 04:30:21 PM
I don't think Behe says the plausibility of irreducible complexity is based on a belief in God.  I think he says the exact opposite of that.   You can go to the Discovery Institute and they clearly define what they mean by IC.   I think he stated that he personally believes in some type of God but that even if IC makes Darwian evolution theory effectively impossible, that doesn't mean the only alternative is that there is a God or intelligent designer.      He has said there could be other natural mechanisms that we do not understand at this point. 
"implausible that the designer is a natural entity" would hardly be the exact opposite of that, but I'll concede that it isn't as explicit as stating that it must be god.
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I believe the judge just agreed with science experts presenting the Darwin side of the case rather than with Behe and other scientists on his side.   A judge agreeing with one side doesn't mean it is settled science.   In his response, Behe clearly demonstrates that the judge didn't understand his points.  If you want to post Behe's responses and show me how he is wrong,  I would def. be interested in reading that.    I think the point he made about how a possible implication to the theory for some peole, that that it proves God exists,  does not mean the theory itself is religious in nature was an excellent point.    He brought up how some people oppose the Big Bang theory because of a possible implication of the theory, that there is a God.  This is despite scientific proof of the Big Bang. 
But this is red herring, is it not?  How many people reject ID on the basis that it implies that a god exists?  I think ID is rejected because of it's lack of association with the scientific process - it is based on bad mathematics (read up on some of the criticisms that mathematicians have on Dr. Dembski's work), practically based entirely on ignorance (evolution can't explain that!  Intelligent Design!), has no acceptable peer reviewed analysis, and, again, based on Behe's words himself, is on par with astrology as a scientific discipline.

And maybe some people were opposed to the Big Bang theory because of the implication of a god existing.  But you know what would have changed their minds?  ACTUAL DATA.  If ID were to do something like that, this discussion wouldn't even be happening.
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The New Scientist article seemed extremely biased against Behe, to include quoting one person in the audience making a snide comment about him.   No attempt to get a pro-Behe comment, I suspect.   They don't quote any of Behe's comments in full so you have to rely on them to present Behe's points accurately.   

I think the irreducibly complex aspect should be talk in the classes just as a general criticism of the theory.    This trial might have been looking at the whole Intelligent Design package which I haven't even studied up on yet.    I don't think the IC concept is about astrology at all so they must have been talking about something else.
I know 'fair and balanced' is all the rage and all, but 'both sides of the story' doesn't always fly.  It really doesn't.  If we're talking about aspects of reality and one side's model is much closer to actual reality than the other side's, then it's going to look pretty lopsided, isn't it?  We're not talking about taste in iced cream flavors here, we're talking about models of reality.  When two sides are expressing diametrically opposed views about what is or is not real, one side is going to see a heavy bias against it.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jdawg70 on October 21, 2013, 04:31:29 PM
Engineers aren't omnipotent.
Please call some of my clients and let them know that :)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 21, 2013, 04:33:11 PM
I don't see why people get so emotional on this origins of life stuff.
I already explained this - free gift with membership, remember?
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   You'd think a cure for cancer was in the balance. 
Science has done far more for disease treatment and prevention than religion has. Go ahead and laugh it off but religion has stood in the way of medical progress countless times, and may very well have allowed the cure for cancer to hang "in the balance".
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Does anybody know of a website where this topic is discussed but not really tied to a website that has a strong opinion about it one way or another?
Are you willing to do ANY research for yourself?
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  I will probably do better in an environment like that because it is more of a discussion amongst equals rather than an inquisition kind of format where some are elevated above others.
That would require it to be a website with only people who don't know what the ToE says, so pretty much any fundamentalist chat site should do you fine. You are not speaking to your equals on this topic here - your science knowledge is badly lacking compared to many of those you've been trying to "debate" with.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jdawg70 on October 21, 2013, 04:33:54 PM
Ok,  well  I thought this was going to be a discussion.  I am not trying to upset people or "spread ignorance".  I didn't know ignorance was an infectious disease.   I try to keep mine self contained as best I can but who knows.  :)
Ignorance is most certainly an infectious disease.  I think Dr. Wakefield is an expert at the repercussions of that one.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 05:00:17 PM
But they sure don't hesitate to acclaim god's will for curing them, do they?

My point though, was that religious proponents, working through avenues such as wanting to teach ID and IC in classrooms, are holding back real science. And who knows what discoveries, and what cures and vaccinations, real science will expose?

Well it seems like this conversation is drifting into what God should be able to do and what he can't and what religious people say and what they don't,  but I was only poking holes in the Darwin evolution theory, or trying to and failing as you see it, and that isn't about God and Christians.   

I don't think most people will say God cured them when the chemotherapy does. I think religion essentially is about how we were created and what happens when we die. 

Given all the remarkable inventions and increased understanding of disease in the last 150 years or so, it is hard to claim Christians have held back science.  What specific type of science have they held back or even opposed?  I would say embroyonic stem cell research would be about the only thing you could make a case for.   They oppose abortion and gay marriage but those are societal or questions of ethics issues not science issues. 

Moreover, is terms of advancing society through science,  determining the origins of life isn't going to lead to any cures for diseases or information that we can apply to solve problems.   It is only going to resolve a riddle.   You can be a great scientist and not know 1 thing about evolution or care about it at all because it is not some kind of bedrock principle of applied science.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 21, 2013, 05:02:41 PM
Were it not for your god-beliefs and Christianity, you would have no motive to cling to IC the way you do.  Without those biases, you'd be able to assess it honestly.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 05:19:38 PM

But this is red herring, is it not?  How many people reject ID on the basis that it implies that a god exists?

I would say about 90 percent of atheists do exactly that, that is why they always drag in religion in this debate.  Behe's arguments on irreducible complexity are not religios in nature.  He isn't talking about the Bible. 

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I think ID is rejected because of it's lack of association with the scientific process - it is based on bad mathematics (read up on some of the criticisms that mathematicians have on Dr. Dembski's work), practically based entirely on ignorance (evolution can't explain that!  Intelligent Design!), has no acceptable peer reviewed analysis, and, again, based on Behe's words himself, is on par with astrology as a scientific discipline.
]
You are basically saying here that Behe is wrong because Behe is wrong.  If he demonstrates that a system is irreducibly complex then he has demonstrated evolution as Darwin defined it, one of small gradual change, could not have resulted in that system, because you need all the parts at once for it to work.   Darwin himself proposed that if an organ was IC then it would nuke his theory.  You aren't quoting Behe in full on the astrology thing and that presented in an article that you admit is biased and appear to think is pretty awesome that it is biased in your below comments.  Again, the astrology comment can't be related to the IC comment unless you think any observation in nature of a system that is IC  is part of astrology. 
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And maybe some people were opposed to the Big Bang theory because of the implication of a god existing.  But you know what would have changed their minds?  ACTUAL DATA.  If ID were to do something like that, this discussion wouldn't even be happening.

Ok, well you are just engaging in rhetoric again and not answering the "data" that Behe and others have put forth.  All they have to do is demonstrate that a system or organ is irreducibly complex, and it really isn't logical to think that there aren't many IC systems throughout the body.  Do you deny that various systems/structures in a lifeform can be IC?  Or do you deny that if they are IC, evolution can't account for them?  It seems like some people have being doing both on here.


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I know 'fair and balanced' is all the rage and all, but 'both sides of the story' doesn't always fly.  It really doesn't.  If we're talking about aspects of reality and one side's model is much closer to actual reality than the other side's, then it's going to look pretty lopsided, isn't it?  We're not talking about taste in iced cream flavors here, we're talking about models of reality.  When two sides are expressing diametrically opposed views about what is or is not real, one side is going to see a heavy bias against it.

 I think somebody defending bias in science isn't someone interested in science. 
I don't think it is that difficult to just ask Dr. Behe to comment for the article and maybe quote him full on the astrology stuff so we have some kind of context for it.   
You haven't even addressed his bacterial flaggelum commentary but you are all about science.   
I don't think most people gave New Science permission to be the deciders of what reality is.  Or the judge, for that matter.  At least not anybody who is a free thinker. Maybe you do. But that doesn't sound like a scientific approach to me.  The writer didn't prove Behe was wrong in his short piece.  Just implied it over and over and then had one critic give a quote to him.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 05:21:07 PM
Were it not for your god-beliefs and Christianity, you would have no motive to cling to IC the way you do.  Without those biases, you'd be able to assess it honestly.

I can easily argue your atheist biases make you an ideologue and a zealot for the Darwinism theory.  That is why these kind of arguments are pointless.   You should examine the argument,  not the person making the argument. 

I am not a Christian.  I don't believe the Bible is legit.  I don't go to church.  I don't believe in the afterlife.   I believe there might be a god of some sort that basically programmed us via DNA, but that has nothing to do with the issue of IC and the problem it presents for evolution.  You don't want to talk about that, for obvious reasons, I think.  So you make it about atheist vs Christian because that is your comfort zone.  That is a lazy way to debate something and I made this point from the get go. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Graybeard on October 21, 2013, 05:24:12 PM
Given all the remarkable inventions and increased understanding of disease in the last 150 years or so, it is hard to claim Christians have held back science. 

Actually, it is relatively easy:

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http://www.secularcafe.org/archive/index.php/t-17880.html

Richard Carrier had done his thesis on proto-scientists in antiquity, and he is trying to get it published. He has discussed ancient science and early Xian hostility to it. Ancient science did really well up to the first and second centuries CE, but then a disaster happened, a disaster that he thinks was the real cause of the millennium-long gap.

This disaster was the Crisis of the Third Century (232 - 284 CE), which was a period of civil war, invasions, economic depression, and plagues. It was a great setback for the Roman Empire, and part of the collapse of its western half (How Civilizations Fall: A Theory of Catabolic Collapse (http://www.dylan.org.uk/greer_on_collapse.pdf) by John Michael Greer; the start of that fall he dates at 166 CE).

After that, Neoplatonism became very popular; it emphasized mystical experience and revelation, which are not exactly very good scientific tools. Xianity was much like Neoplatonism in that regard, and was even worse, since it was anti-pagan. However, some theologians did like some pagan philosophers, notably Plato. The ones they disliked barely survived, like the Atomists and the Epicureans.

Medieval monks did copy a lot of books, but they did not copy much ancient science. Instead, they mainly copied Bibles and works of Church Fathers and prayer books and hymn books and biographies of saints. When some of them copied the works of the ancient architect Vitruvius, they got the text pretty much correct, but they screwed up his tables of numerical values rather badly.

When medieval Europeans learned more about ancient philosophers, especially Aristotle, around 1200, it caused some controversy. In Paris, France, the bishops there issued several Condemnations of 1210–1277 of heretical teachings, like the eternity of the Universe and God being passive and so forth. So what happened was the assimilation of pagan philosophy and calling it Xian. Modern science developed out of that.

In the Middle East, after the foundation of Islam (c.600AD) that was basically done to bring peace to a warring area, prosperity and science at first flourished but, around 1000AD, a Caliphate arose that was fundamentalist in its approach and basically ordered life to be lived by the Quran - Arab science died and never recovered.

To be fair, science flourishes in countries with expanding economies and good education, however, countries with expanding economies are usually low scorers when it comes to religion.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Dante on October 21, 2013, 05:25:41 PM
How many times must you be told that the ToE isn't about the origins of life?

And yes, the ToE most certainly can, and does do things to prevent and cure ailments. Like, I dunno, ever hear  of genetics? Or how about flu vaccination? It works because we understand evolution.Teaching the "controversy" most certainly will not.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 05:34:43 PM
[

lol, well if you have to go back that far for an example I think that I was effectively right for modern times.   I don't think being religious means you must be anti-science.  That is how some atheists like to define it, often for political reasons.   Outside of the origins of life issue, and something related to abortion which obviously is an ethical question more than a religious one, there isn't much for religion and science to conflict on. 



Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 05:35:00 PM
Moreover, is terms of advancing society through science,  determining the origins of life isn't going to lead to any cures for diseases or information that we can apply to solve problems.   It is only going to resolve a riddle.

I dunno, surely shutting up creationists is a worthy goal. Once that skittle recognises it has fallen at lot less energy will be wasted on debates like this.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 21, 2013, 05:37:33 PM
DrTesla, are you also a proponent of ID? If so, why?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 05:42:25 PM
Moreover, is terms of advancing society through science,  determining the origins of life isn't going to lead to any cures for diseases or information that we can apply to solve problems.   It is only going to resolve a riddle.

I dunno, surely shutting up creationists is a worthy goal. Once that skittle recognises it has fallen at lot less energy will be wasted on debates like this.

lol,  well  I think I might need to debate this on a website that isn't mostly about slapping around Christians.   You are really here for the atheist vs believer debate, not so much a scientific and logical discussion about irreducible complexity and how Darwin evolution theory can account for it.   To me, trying to tie any scientific opposition to Darwin evolution theory to nothing more than religion is how you prevent any real questioning of the theory, period.  That doesn't seem like a good idea if you care about the truth but who knows.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 21, 2013, 05:50:04 PM
I can easily argue your atheist biases make you an ideologue and a zealot for the Darwinism theory.

No.  You could easily claim it.  Lying is easy indeed.

The difference is that you havn't read a thread full of my posts on the subject, whereas I have read a thread full of posts of yours, so unlike you I have something to go off of.  You've demonstrated to me, as a reader, that you cannot think outside of your bias.  I have not done the same for you.  To equate the situations is to state that you are willing to lie about me.  Then again, for a disciple of Behe, a willingness to lie is not surprising.

That is why these kind of arguments are pointless.   You should examine the argument,  not the person making the argument. 

That's already been done by others.  For whatever reason, you are unable to process what's been written by others in this thread.  The most serious problem thus resides with you, not with your argument.  Your "argument" had been debunked before you even showed up at the forum, and repeatedly afterward.  Your unwillingness to be honest about it is the real issue here.  It prevents any fruitful discussion of anything else.  It is a meta-problem.

I am not a Christian.  I don't believe the Bible is legit.  I don't go to church.  I don't believe in the afterlife.   I believe there might be a god of some sort that basically programmed us via DNA, but that has nothing to do with the issue of IC and the problem it presents for evolution.  You don't want to talk about that, for obvious reasons, I think.  So you make it about atheist vs Christian because that is your comfort zone.  That is a lazy way to debate something and I made this point from the get go.

The problem is worse than I thought, then.  Not only are you unwilling to honestly assess IC, but you don't even have a religious bias preventing you.  That means that the problem with you must lie elsewhere.  Venture a guess?

The reason I'm not addressing your non-argument is that others have ripped it up thoroughly already, and you've ignored the fact.  You'd ignore it if I did it, too.  So why bother?  The biggest problem here, as I've said, is your ignorance and dishonesty, rather than your beliefs.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 05:54:02 PM
You are really here for the atheist vs believer debate, not so much a scientific and logical discussion about irreducible complexity and how Darwin evolution theory can account for it.   
Well that's partly right (this is WWGHA after all) but read on about where you are wrong ..

To me, trying to tie any scientific opposition to Darwin evolution theory to nothing more than religion is how you prevent any real questioning of the theory, period.  That doesn't seem like a good idea if you care about the truth but who knows.
What exactly are YOUR credentials in progressing such a debate?  You admit you don't know much about evolution but you challenge it with stuff you know even less about. 

And you chose WWGHA to launch this little bit of ignorant niggle against evolution - not a science forum or say via a researched publication in a respected journal.  A little hypocritical don't you think?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 05:57:23 PM
I don't think it is fair to say most religious people think cancer is god's will.  Not all religious people see things the same way  so it is reductionist to state x is what they all believe.  I know one thing, religious people are not anti-cancer research or anti-cancer treatments like radiation and chemotherapy.   

For sure this is true of some.  But not all.  And it is religious people who are holding back science.

You can believe in "God" and not believe he controls what happens to you.

Sure.  And you can believe in a happy marriage and still commit adultery. It is a tribute to the ability of the brain to compartmentalize beliefs. 

  Look at this way,  if your car has a flat, do you say it is the engineer's will who designed the car that your car's wheel went flat?  Of course not, but that is basically what you are saying most religious people do.

Engineers aren't omnipotent.  God is.

You are tying beliefs together because that is your belief in what God should be able to do.  What is your proof that God controls what happens to people in their lives, liking being in a car accident or getting cancer?   You don't believe in God but you have a clear idea on what the scope of God's power is if he does exist.  That is a bit of compartmentalization and a disconnect in your thinking.    Why doesn't God just design us not to die at all if he is omnipotent and he can do anything.   

I think it makes more sense that if there is a God, he is more like an engineer who designs a car.  Some of the cars are going to have problems, some of them will fail earlier than others, and they will all fail at some point.   He has nothing to do with the individual cars other than his original design.  He does not decide when a car has engine mounts that go bad and need to be replaced.   If you design anything with moving parts it is going to have problems and fail at one point especially if it is abused the way people abuse their bodies via smoking and other stuff. 
 Then when the car dies, it goes to heaven (Just a joke  :) )
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 06:04:48 PM
You are really here for the atheist vs believer debate, not so much a scientific and logical discussion about irreducible complexity and how Darwin evolution theory can account for it.   
Well that's partly right (this is WWGHA after all) but read on about where you are wrong ..

To me, trying to tie any scientific opposition to Darwin evolution theory to nothing more than religion is how you prevent any real questioning of the theory, period.  That doesn't seem like a good idea if you care about the truth but who knows.
What exactly are YOUR credentials in progressing such a debate?  You admit you don't know much about evolution but you challenge it with stuff you know even less about. 

And you chose WWGHA to launch this little bit of ignorant niggle against evolution - not a science forum or say via a researched publication in a respected journal.  A little hypocritical don't you think?

I was reading the god is imaginary proofs and I saw a few of them he asserted evolution essentially proves there is no God and then he even got into the irreducible complexity thing which was the topic of this thread, I thought.  Given I was interested in IC prior to reading the God is Imaginary proofs,  that is how I got here.

What are your credentials?   Exactly.  I do understand the basics of the evolution theory.  I am also not angry if somebody gives an opinion different than mine and I don't feel the need to do personal insults.  I was trying to make the point that we can all accuse each of other a bias that leads us to agree with a stance on a given issue.  So why do that?

Why does this need to be a contentious discussion. 

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 21, 2013, 06:21:12 PM
I do understand the basics of the evolution theory.

This is a blatant lie.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 06:31:07 PM
I was reading the god is imaginary proofs and I saw a few of them he asserted evolution essentially proves there is no God and then he even got into the irreducible complexity thing which was the topic of this thread, I thought.  Given I was interested in IC prior to reading the God is Imaginary proofs,  that is how I got here.
That's an interesting story - but explains nothing about your motivation to stubbornly promote a widely discredited concept.  We've discussed the reasons why it's rubbish non-science for several pages already and you haven't retreated an inch.

What are your credentials?   Exactly. 
I am an atheist - which is exactly why I'm here. I happen to have a post-grad qualification in molecular genetics.

I do understand the basics of the evolution theory.
 
You are out of your depth - sorry if the truth hurts.

I am also not angry if somebody gives an opinion different than mine and I don't feel the need to do personal insults. 
But quite happy to tell me I "should be in awe" and that I'm here to "prevent any real questioning of the theory, period."  That is pretty condescending don't you think?

Why does this need to be a contentious discussion.
Because you're stubborn and arguing from ignorance.  Several people have given you heaps of leads to learn about what's wrong with IC. Back off a little and read about it.  When you feel you understand it properly come back and we'll discuss it calmly.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 21, 2013, 06:32:16 PM
I do understand the basics of the evolution theory. 
Obviously not.
Quote
Why does this need to be a contentious discussion.
Free gift with membership - the gift of providing you with enough information to not sound like you don't know anything about a topic you keep discussing. This is the third time I've told you.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 21, 2013, 06:40:40 PM
I would say about 90 percent of atheists do exactly that, that is why they always drag in religion in this debate.  Behe's arguments on irreducible complexity are not religios in nature.  He isn't talking about the Bible.
You should really learn how to distinguish cause and effect.  Religion gets dragged into discussions about intelligent design because intelligent design is, at heart, a religious argument.  The two literally cannot be separated - at most, people can obscure the religiousness of intelligent design, but they can't separate the two out.  It will continue to be that way until someone actually sits down and does the work needed to validate intelligent design as a scientific theory.  As long as you and others treat it as nothing but a logical argument, it will have no basis for countering evidence-based arguments.

Quote from: DrTesla
You are basically saying here that Behe is wrong because Behe is wrong.
No.  Behe has failed to actually prove that any of his intelligent design arguments are supported by evidence, and has moved his goalposts in order to avoid having to recant bad arguments (such as the flagellum being irreducibly complex when, in fact, it was shown to be reducible).  As far as I can tell, he didn't so much as acknowledge Miller's rebuttal regarding the flagellum, let alone attempted to counter it.  That's why I and others here consider Behe to be wrong.

Quote from: DrTesla
If he demonstrates that a system is irreducibly complex then he has demonstrated evolution as Darwin defined it, one of small gradual change, could not have resulted in that system, because you need all the parts at once for it to work.
Incorrect.  Did you watch the video median linked?  It's a pretty clear rebuttal of the entire "irreducibly complex" argument.  Even if you have an organ which can't have parts removed without becoming nonfunctional, there's no reason at all that you can't add parts first, thus providing the support that allows the "irreducibly complex" organ to be...reduced.  And that's just one rebuttal - there are others in that video.

If you seriously intend to push irreducible complexity as the "Achilles heel" of evolutionary theory, then you need to understand that you have to address rebuttals of it - not simply try to blow them off as you have been doing.

Quote from: DrTesla
Darwin himself proposed that if an organ was IC then it would nuke his theory.
And with our greater level of knowledge, we've shown that isn't true.  Organs that appear irreducibly complex can still have undergone evolutionary change which previously removed or modified parts of that organ.

Quote from: DrTesla
You aren't quoting Behe in full on the astrology thing and that presented in an article that you admit is biased and appear to think is pretty awesome that it is biased in your below comments.  Again, the astrology comment can't be related to the IC comment unless you think any observation in nature of a system that is IC  is part of astrology.
Do you actually know what Behe said?  It's apparent you don't, because you keep repeating a falsehood.

Here is the actual transcript of the direct examination of Behe in the Kitzmiller vs Dover trial:  http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/dover/day11pm.html (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/dover/day11pm.html)  I was intending to quote the relevant section, but that would have ended up being two or three pages of text, which is not really workable.  Suffice it to say that Behe did in fact acknowledge that astrology could be a scientific theory under his definition of "scientific theory", as well as intelligent design.  This means that he had to widen the definition of scientific theory so much to treat intelligent design as a theory that he had to admit that astrology could also be considered a theory under his definition.  That is the point of the astrology comment, and you would do well to take it seriously rather than trying to claim that people aren't quoting him in full and that they're biased, somehow.

The fact of the matter here is that Behe did in fact say that the way he defined a scientific theory, you could treat something like astrology as a scientific theory, just as you could treat intelligent design as a scientific theory.  In other words, he widened it to near uselessness.

Quote from: DrTesla
Ok, well you are just engaging in rhetoric again and not answering the "data" that Behe and others have put forth.
You do realize that by putting data in quotes like this, you're giving the appearance that you don't actually think it's real data, right?

Quote from: DrTesla
All they have to do is demonstrate that a system or organ is irreducibly complex,
Yes, and that means giving evidence and answering rebuttals to their arguments.  Which Behe - or any other advocate of intelligent design - hasn't done and probably never will do.

Quote from: DrTesla
and it really isn't logical to think that there aren't many IC systems throughout the body.
It doesn't matter whether it's 'logical' or not.  You have to show that those systems are irreducibly complex, and you have to answer arguments that show that they aren't, in fact, irreducibly complex.  Otherwise your argument fails.

Quote from: DrTesla
Do you deny that various systems/structures in a lifeform can be IC?  Or do you deny that if they are IC, evolution can't account for them?  It seems like some people have being doing both on here.
It isn't enough to ask whether something can be irreducibly complex.  You have to show that they are irreducibly complex, and answer any rebuttals against your argument, or else it doesn't work.  That's really all there is to it.

Quote from: DrTesla
I think somebody defending bias in science isn't someone interested in science.
Agreed.  But the corollary of that is that someone trying to advance bias in science is also not interested in science.  And that's how intelligent design, irreducible complexity, and other such ideas come across.

Quote from: DrTesla
I don't think it is that difficult to just ask Dr. Behe to comment for the article and maybe quote him full on the astrology stuff so we have some kind of context for it.
I linked to the text of the court transcript in this post.  That's plenty of context.

Quote from: DrTesla
You haven't even addressed his bacterial flaggelum commentary but you are all about science.
Would you kindly spend some time learning about this subject?  Kenneth Miller showed in 2004 that you can remove half of the proteins that make up the bacterial flagellum, and what you end up with is a fully functional protein injector used by bacteria to insert their genetic material into other cells.  That destroys Behe's argument that the flagellum is irreducibly complex.

Quote from: DrTesla
I don't think most people gave New Science permission to be the deciders of what reality is.  Or the judge, for that matter.  At least not anybody who is a free thinker. Maybe you do. But that doesn't sound like a scientific approach to me.  The writer didn't prove Behe was wrong in his short piece.  Just implied it over and over and then had one critic give a quote to him.
Of course not.  Nobody gets to be the arbiter of what reality is, except reality itself.  And the only way we can tell what reality has to say on the subject is to use evidence from reality.  Logic is not evidence.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 06:46:04 PM
I do understand the basics of the evolution theory. 
Obviously not.
Quote
Why does this need to be a contentious discussion.
Free gift with membership - the gift of providing you with enough information to not sound like you don't know anything about a topic you keep discussing. This is the third time I've told you.

Why don't you tell me what I misunderstanding about evolution?  It is beneficial for you to say that I don't know what it means but then you don't define it yourself so I can compare and contrast.   I think random mutations and natural selection leading to gradual change and speciation is pretty much how it goes.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 21, 2013, 06:48:44 PM
I do understand the basics of the evolution theory. 
Obviously not.
Quote
Why does this need to be a contentious discussion.
Free gift with membership - the gift of providing you with enough information to not sound like you don't know anything about a topic you keep discussing. This is the third time I've told you.

Why don't you tell me what I misunderstanding about evolution?  It is beneficial for you to say that I don't know what it means but then you don't define it yourself so I can compare and contrast.   I think random mutations and natural selection leading to gradual change and speciation is pretty much how it goes.
I've already laid out the conditions. You've ignored them.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 21, 2013, 06:50:56 PM
I do understand the basics of the evolution theory. 
Obviously not.
Quote
Why does this need to be a contentious discussion.
Free gift with membership - the gift of providing you with enough information to not sound like you don't know anything about a topic you keep discussing. This is the third time I've told you.

Why don't you tell me what I misunderstanding about evolution?  It is beneficial for you to say that I don't know what it means but then you don't define it yourself so I can compare and contrast.   I think random mutations and natural selection leading to gradual change and speciation is pretty much how it goes.


Yet you have yet to define what any of those terms actually means, nor have you described the specific theses evolution makes (aka - you haven't yet represented what evolution actually teaches in a coherent way, and you've been asked to do so many times). All you've given is a vague definition (while also admitting you have very little knowledge about it). The suspicion is that you're attempting to attack your own misconception, not actual evolutionary biology.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 06:54:23 PM
I think random mutations and natural selection leading to gradual change and speciation is pretty much how it goes.

Fine. Now what effects do you think accidental duplication of a gene, or a whole chromosome might have?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 06:54:53 PM

jaime,

good responses.  I will try to answer them but it will probably be tomorrow.  I have to fill out a job application tonight,  and I want to get my head around this astrology thing.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 21, 2013, 07:00:07 PM
I think random mutations and natural selection leading to gradual change and speciation is pretty much how it goes.

Fine. Now what effects do you think accidental duplication of a gene, or a whole chromosome might have?

I don't know...I assume if you are bringing it up,  that somehow it explains how evolution can produce an irreducible complex system in small gradual changes? 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 21, 2013, 07:28:48 PM
I don't know...I assume if you are bringing it up,  that somehow it explains how evolution can produce an irreducible complex system in small gradual changes?

It'll certainly be part of the explanation.

While you educate yourself about that question, think about the implications if a gene has developed two or more functions (by the process you already understand).  But selection pressures are stronger on one function than the other(s). And the gene is then duplicated? 

Add to this what happens when you have two single celled species that have diverged from one another for several thousand generations, finding quite different ways to live.  One eats the other and instead of digesting it, the genetic information combines?
Or the eaten one continues living inside the predator :o  and they both benefit from each other's unique capabilities.

Are you starting to get the idea now that there are (many known) ways for genetic information to leap ahead incredibly fast compared to just the simple processes you already understood?

Next lesson we'll talk more about the concept of redundancy - and the "magic" that can bring.  (BTW it's one of several ways Behe's ideas on IC have been debunked.)

Then about viruses and plasmids and sex - accelerating things even more ;)

I have to go to sleep now - I'm not in Sydney - I'm travelling in Africa and it's very very late now  :)
But please don't let me sleeping slow your learning down.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Iamrational on October 21, 2013, 11:54:33 PM
Why don't you tell me what I misunderstanding about evolution?

Anytime someone starts heading into abiogenesis arguments that right there tells me they don't understand evolution. Easy
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 22, 2013, 12:55:36 AM
I clearly have described evolution correctly and even corrected some on here conflating variation within a species due to natural selection with evolution theory.  Yet you focused on me not them.

The fact the one doesn't have anything to do with the other doesn't mean I describe the one inaccurately.  It just means I packaged the two ideas together because they are related in that if there isn't a first lifeform then there is no starting point for evolution.    It also seems if you are going to say there is no such thing as creation / intelligent design, the you might want to account for how the first lifeform originated spontenously from non-life.   If not,  you cant blame some people for assuming that the first lifeform was created by some kind of supernatural god and if he created one,  he could have created other lifeforms. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 22, 2013, 01:00:25 AM
Q. Under that same definition astrology is a scientific theory under your definition, correct? A. Under my definition, a scientific theory is a proposed explanation which focuses or points to physical, observable data and logical inferences. There are many things throughout the history of science which we now think to be incorrect which nonetheless would fit that -- which would fit that definition. Yes, astrology is in fact one and so is the ether theory of the propagation of light, and many other -- many other theories as well. (Michael Behe, October 18 Testimony, PM Session, pp. 38-39.) - See more at: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2010/10/tracking_down_john_wises_inven038891.html#sthash.rdWhV2AS.dpuf

Here is how a Darwin evolutionist  described what Behe said in which he includes a made up quote:  During the Kitzmiller v. Dover Board of Education trial, Prof. Michael Behe - a leading proponent of Intelligent Design, stated under oath that "under the broad definition of science that ID proponents prefer, astrology also qualifies as science". - See more at: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2010/10/tracking_down_john_wises_inven038891.html#sthash.sOxzxrkL.dpuf

Except he never said astrology is science.  He clearly states that astrology is incorrect in his testimony and gives other examples of things we know are incorrect but were once part of scientific explanations.   He's trying to define scientific explanation, not science.   The definition of science explanation is obviously something people can quibble over but they are basically trying to hang him with some semantics stuff but any logical person understands he has not said astrology = science here. 

GIve the scientific consensus argument use ed by Darwin people, they would have to agree that astrology was scientific explanation back in the day when there was a "scientific" consensus in favor of that.    Behe's point is that historically scientists of their day have been proven wrong over time.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 22, 2013, 02:09:19 AM
DrTelsa, how are you going with the homework I gave you? :)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ThatZenoGuy on October 22, 2013, 02:20:33 AM
Ohh hell...

Not intelligent design...anything but that monstrosity.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Iamrational on October 22, 2013, 02:33:47 AM
   If not,  you cant blame some people for assuming that the first lifeform was created by some kind of supernatural god

Well actually you can blame said person because of their default position.

A scientist starts from the default position that they don't know. So they continue at this time to conduct experiments to try and replicate Abiogenesis.

You start from the default position that you know (at least implying it was your supernatural deity). This and you do so without any science based evidence. That is certainly blame worthy. How about instead you just say I am not sure right now like the rest of us. Problem solved.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wheels5894 on October 22, 2013, 02:52:08 AM
Dr Telsa,

Your support for Behe is all very well but you do not appear to have read the judgment of Judge Jones or any of the evidence.  Here is a report which is shorter to read and quicker too. (http://www.nbcnews.com/id/10545387/ns/technology_and_science-science/t/judge-rules-against-intelligent-design/#.UmYtOYUilp0)

What was done in the trial was to show that the book that had been banned in schools as it was a creationist text had been modified by change the word god to designer and that, in fact, ID was invented to try to avoid the banning of creationist texts in school. Essentially, it was shown that the whole purpose of ID was to get religion into the science classes.

Behe has advanced various ideas of Irreducible Complexity - the flagellum for example but for each one, biologists in the trial were able to show that the structures referred to derive from simpler ones in older species and thus that the structure were not IR at all. Behe has not been able to come up with anything that can be shown to by IR at all.

Now, seriously, how can you rely on Behe when he has been shown to be comprehensively wrong on his pet theory?

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 22, 2013, 03:03:06 AM
I clearly have described evolution correctly and even corrected some on here conflating variation within a species due to natural selection with evolution theory.  Yet you focused on me not them.

The fact the one doesn't have anything to do with the other doesn't mean I describe the one inaccurately.  It just means I packaged the two ideas together because they are related in that if there isn't a first lifeform then there is no starting point for evolution.    It also seems if you are going to say there is no such thing as creation / intelligent design, the you might want to account for how the first lifeform originated spontenously from non-life.   If not,  you cant blame some people for assuming that the first lifeform was created by some kind of supernatural god and if he created one,  he could have created other lifeforms.

LOL. Thank you for admitting what nearly everyone here knew all along - YOU ASSUMED. Out of your own ignorance and credulity you assumed the position you wanted (started with your conclusion) and now you're stuck to it - unwilling to amend your beliefs and stop using logical fallacies. You see, if science doesn't know something you don't just get to make shit up and act as if it's rational - b/c it's not. What you're practicing is called The Argument from Incredulity fallacy and we've mentioned this quite a few times now. Stop using it! Your ignorance is not a justification for making assumptions! You need actual evidence, not just believing b/c you think any other way is impossible (the point of the OP).


p.s. - Yes, we can rightly blame you. We can blame you for being gullible and buying into logically fallacious arguments.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 22, 2013, 03:15:58 AM
Q. Under that same definition astrology is a scientific theory under your definition, correct? A. Under my definition, a scientific theory is a proposed explanation which focuses or points to physical, observable data and logical inferences. There are many things throughout the history of science which we now think to be incorrect which nonetheless would fit that -- which would fit that definition. Yes, astrology is in fact one and so is the ether theory of the propagation of light, and many other -- many other theories as well. (Michael Behe, October 18 Testimony, PM Session, pp. 38-39.) - See more at: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2010/10/tracking_down_john_wises_inven038891.html#sthash.rdWhV2AS.dpuf (http://www.evolutionnews.org/2010/10/tracking_down_john_wises_inven038891.html#sthash.rdWhV2AS.dpuf)

Right there Behe loses all credibility. Astrology is not science. Trying to obscure the definition of science so as to smuggle in your nonscience/nonsense/pseudoscience hypothesis is quite shady. This is called the Equivocation fallacy - trying to arbitrarily redefine the definitions of terms so as to make your position correct by definition. It is severely dishonest and underhanded.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 22, 2013, 03:31:20 AM
It also seems if you are going to say there is no such thing as creation / intelligent design, the you might want to account for how the first lifeform originated spontenously from non-life. 

I tend to agree with this  :)  Except the main thrust of creationist arguments is to use long evolved and diverged species as "evidence" for their ideas such as irreducible complexity and intelligent design. 

Demonising Darwin with things that your average Christian can see (but not understand, like "Why are there still monkeys?") is much easier than talking about near invisible things such as membranes, auto-catalysis, template directed polymerisation, and geological time.

So we don't need to broaden the debate to abiogenesis to deal with the creationist assault on evolution.  The more settled science of evolution is more than solid enough to debunk ideas like irreducible complexity and intelligent design.  From an atheist point of view, showing that the "hand of God" is absent in evolution is enough win for now.

Abiogenesis science is quite different to evolutionary science. Evolution has mountains of tangible evidence. Protocells, by their nature, could not leave fossils and the genetics has moved on.  Abiogenesis has to deal in more speculative ideas and with environmental conditions that are extremely difficult to replicate.  Even if we do manage to produce abiogenesis in the lab it'll be highly unlikely to be a faithful replication of the actual historical processes that gave us the beginnings of life - because there are very many possible pathways. Abiogenesis is also not happening in nature anymore - because any emerging rudimentary biochemical system gets eaten by long established advanced microbes.   
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ThatZenoGuy on October 22, 2013, 03:35:22 AM
*to the thread name*

I never got how this argument began, i mean, X (evolution, other shit) is apparently impossible, but an omnimax being is not?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Dante on October 22, 2013, 06:52:34 AM
The fact the one doesn't have anything to do with the other doesn't mean I describe the one inaccurately.  It just means I packaged the two ideas together because they are related in that if there isn't a first lifeform then there is no starting point for evolution.

So if we were talking about the degree of banking at the Indianapolis racetrack, you'd keep conflating that with the Brick Yard? They have zero to do with each other.

Quote
It also seems if you are going to say there is no such thing as creation / intelligent design, the you might want to account for how the first lifeform originated spontenously from non-life.   If not,  you cant blame some people for assuming that the first lifeform was created by some kind of supernatural god and if he created one,  he could have created other lifeforms.

Bzzzzt. Fail. The ToE stands on it's own. And, it stands quite tall, especially compared to any so-called "intelligent" design.

Unfortunately for you, you'll never get it, because evolution contradicts your preconceptions indoctrinated into you. All the evidence in the world won't change your mind. Sad, really.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 22, 2013, 07:53:16 AM
I clearly have described evolution correctly and even corrected some on here conflating variation within a species due to natural selection with evolution theory.  Yet you focused on me not them.


Variation and natural selection are the same thing. This just shows your ignorance. You cannot argue against something if you do not understand it. Why don't you read the book - why evolution is true by J Coney? Then you might begin to discuss the subject.

Why did you ignore my post about lizards showing this, why did you ignore my post about the eye disproving irreducible complexity?

Your thinking process is the real problem. That is why I asked you if you have any compulsive habits such as locking the door ten times. It is not just a rude question, it relates to your thinking process and your answer to the question would tell me if you are acting honestly on this thread. If you don't answer whether you have any compulsive habits, I will assume that you know that you are being dishonest in this discussion. Have you got any compulsive habits? Just yes or no. Roughly how many?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wheels5894 on October 22, 2013, 08:37:44 AM
Maybe Jesus had it right - 'There are none so deaf as those who will not hear.'
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 22, 2013, 08:53:55 AM
Except he never said astrology is science.  He clearly states that astrology is incorrect in his testimony and gives other examples of things we know are incorrect but were once part of scientific explanations.   He's trying to define scientific explanation, not science.   The definition of science explanation is obviously something people can quibble over but they are basically trying to hang him with some semantics stuff but any logical person understands he has not said astrology = science here.
But he did say that it could be a scientific theory.

http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/dover/day11pm.html (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/dover/day11pm.html)
Quote
Q And I asked you, "Is astrology a theory under that definition?" And you answered, "Is astrology? It could be, yes." Right?

A That's correct.

Q Not, it used to be, right?

A Well, that's what I was thinking. I was thinking of astrology when it was first proposed. I'm not thinking of tarot cards and little mind readers and so on that you might see along the highway. I was thinking of it in its historical sense.
He might have been thinking of "astrology when it was first proposed", yet he did not say that until the prosecuting attorney pressed him on his evasiveness and attempts to move the goalposts.  So I think we can give that one to Rothschild.

The attorney also made a good point about 'theories' that were originally based on appearances that have been discarded, such as geocentrism.  You know, the theory that everything in the universe revolves around the Earth?  That's the way it looked to people in the past - but they didn't know about the Earth's rotation.  And then he made the comparison that intelligent design (and irreducible complexity by extension) look accurate (EDIT--if you just look at them, and don't spend a lot of time examining them).  That's why we need to critically examine the evidence and keep examining it in order to tell whether a proposed explanation is accurate or not.  But advocates of intelligent design wouldn't have us do that.  You'd have us discard evolutionary theory - except the parts that don't contradict the idea of supernatural interventions - based on things like, "well, this sure does look like it was purposefully designed" and "well, this sure does look irreducible".  Which is all that intelligent design and irreducible complexity boil down to.

Quote from: DrTesla
GIve the scientific consensus argument use ed by Darwin people, they would have to agree that astrology was scientific explanation back in the day when there was a "scientific" consensus in favor of that.    Behe's point is that historically scientists of their day have been proven wrong over time.
Incorrect.  The definition used by scientists for a scientific theory (less those like Behe, who have redefined the term for their convenience) is "a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world that can incorporate facts, laws, inferences and tested hypotheses".  It has nothing to do about whether it happens to be a consensus or not.  It's whether the explanation is well-substantiated.  And evolutionary theory is and has been well-substantiated, whereas intelligent design and irreducible complexity have not.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Add Homonym on October 22, 2013, 09:53:50 AM
I clearly have described evolution correctly and even corrected some on here conflating variation within a species due to natural selection with evolution theory.

How did you correct them, when variation within a "species" can be caused by mutation? By mutation, I mean a gene gets hit by radiation, mutagen (etc) and is now a new variant, that never existed within the species before. Creationists like to bang on about how breeding can never cause significant change, and that variation within a species is not evidence of progressive evolution, but it is simply adapting within God's parameters.

Basically, you conflated "variation within a species" to mean what you wanted it to mean.

An important part of science, which is never included in the school boy definition, is peer review. This is a process by which your peers attack you viciously, and criticize your work. In the case of Michael Behe, I don't believe he has had his work peer reviewed, because creation science is not a competitive subject. By this, I mean, nothing is ever developed from one researcher to the next. It's all fresh bullshit with each enthusiast. At worst, Behe has been dressed down with some severe praise from sycophants.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Add Homonym on October 22, 2013, 10:32:16 AM
I believe the judge just agreed with science experts presenting the Darwin side of the case rather than with Behe and other scientists on his side.

I went back a few pages, and found that IndoctrinatedTesla just thinks that science is a matter of getting people on your side, like it's a school yard fight.

Yes, in science, you do get the shit kicked out of you, if you attempt to go against the dominant paradigm, but it doesn't mean that anyone who goes against the DP will be vindicated. It's up to the creationists to have a valid theory, which is robustly criticized within their own ranks. But "irreducible complexity" is just another criticism of Darwinism, rather than a theory of how things really work, so you can't criticize it and remain in the club. You just say something is irreducibly complex, and your sycophantic peers say, "Oh, really. If you say so." If any of your sycophantic peers then dare to demonstrate how something wasn't irreducibly complex, they get accused of heresy, and are expelled from the club. "We're here to show how things are irreducibly complex. If you don't agree with us, the you are OUT".
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wheels5894 on October 22, 2013, 10:39:17 AM
Indeed!

The whole way modern science works is that for each idea someone publishes, everyone else in the field tries to destroy. Think of it like a hypothesis that all swans are white. If I published that, many, many people would be out looking for that one black swan that sinks the argument. Or, maybe think of the Higgs Bosun.It was proposed in the 1960s and survived as a hypothesis right up to the building of CERN - a lab built to find the Higgs. It survive attacks on the hypothesis so well, that scientists were prepared to spend real money looking - and, of course it was found.

Now, take Behe and the Discovery Institute. Tell me, Dr Tesla, of any original research completed by the Institute? Then tell me of any which they published in peer-reviewed Journals. The Institute and their supporters say that the peer-review system means that as people don't like their ideas, they are kept out of journals yet that is not the case. The reviewers are looking to see if the paper has good arguments and isn't just assertions without evidence - the real problem here - either that or the papers have already had their ideas shown to be untrue, like the flagellum idea.

So Dr Tesla, come up with the goods - show us some of the Institutes's original research and the publication data. If it is not in a peer reviewed journal it doesn't really count as science.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 22, 2013, 11:28:25 AM
I was on campus this morning and was given an invitation to a speaking event this evening. The invite (I wish I had the option of just uploading a copy) Starts with "Who's Your Daddy?" with a picture of a monkey sticking it's tongue out. Directly below it has: Evolution: a Theory in Crisis! Come & see what's being left out in your science class! Free admission.

And at the bottom: *Guaranteed to not make a monkey out of you!

So I asked the guy who was handing out the invites "Wait a second. are you saying that this is going to demonstrate the science behind an alternative to evolution?" His response? Well yes, but you have to be willing to, you know, put on the right kind of glasses to see it that way. Can we count on seeing you there tonight?"

I grinned at him and said that yes, Ill actually change my plans a bit to make sure I can attend.

This should be fun. First hand experience of the argument from the other side, about the science of creationism or ID. I can hardly wait to hear it. Dude said they plan to record the session and upload it, so I might even be able to share it with you guys.  8)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 22, 2013, 11:34:20 AM
The "right kind of glasses". Yeah, the ones that blind you to reality.

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 22, 2013, 11:38:59 AM
If the guy had ever dealt with me before in any meaningful manner, he would have recognized the grin on my face and rescinded his invitation immediately. I had no interest whatsoever until he made that stupid right kind of glasses remark - now I feel obligated to attend and see if he can show me where to find the right kind of glasses. Mine seem to show reality a little better than the ones he's talking about.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on October 22, 2013, 11:52:08 AM
If you don't come back after tonight, Jag, we'll know they had really really good glasses.

Dr.T, quick question. If you were wrong about something and didn't know it, what would be the best way for others to correct your error? Our methods aren't working. So I thought i would ask.

And by the way, if you loose this argument, you win. Because you'll have better information and less detritus in your head. That's a good thing.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wright on October 22, 2013, 12:37:12 PM
If the guy had ever dealt with me before in any meaningful manner, he would have recognized the grin on my face and rescinded his invitation immediately. I had no interest whatsoever until he made that stupid right kind of glasses remark - now I feel obligated to attend and see if he can show me where to find the right kind of glasses. Mine seem to show reality a little better than the ones he's talking about.

Please report your experience in a new thread here. It'd be great hearing the same old (as I doubt these people will have anything new) creationist nonsense filtered by someone taking contemporary bio classes.

Any chance you could write up your attending that lecture and get some credit from any of your classes? As in a first-hand account of common fallacies used attacking the ToE and how they're still being used? It'd be a way of getting something more from it.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jdawg70 on October 22, 2013, 12:40:11 PM
I was on campus this morning and was given an invitation to a speaking event this evening. The invite (I wish I had the option of just uploading a copy) Starts with "Who's Your Daddy?" with a picture of a monkey sticking it's tongue out. Directly below it has: Evolution: a Theory in Crisis! Come & see what's being left out in your science class! Free admission.

And at the bottom: *Guaranteed to not make a monkey out of you!

So I asked the guy who was handing out the invites "Wait a second. are you saying that this is going to demonstrate the science behind an alternative to evolution?" His response? Well yes, but you have to be willing to, you know, put on the right kind of glasses to see it that way. Can we count on seeing you there tonight?"

I grinned at him and said that yes, Ill actually change my plans a bit to make sure I can attend.

This should be fun. First hand experience of the argument from the other side, about the science of creationism or ID. I can hardly wait to hear it. Dude said they plan to record the session and upload it, so I might even be able to share it with you guys.  8)
The use of the phrase "Who's your Daddy?" makes this feel very Jack Chick-esque.  See if any of the Chick bulls**t makes its way into this event.

If unfamiliar with "Big Daddy", here's a fun dissection of it:
http://enterthejabberwock.com/2002/04/chick-dissection-big-daddy/
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 22, 2013, 01:19:56 PM
If you don't come back after tonight, Jag, we'll know they had really really good glasses.

Dr.T, quick question. If you were wrong about something and didn't know it, what would be the best way for others to correct your error? Our methods aren't working. So I thought i would ask.

And by the way, if you loose this argument, you win. Because you'll have better information and less detritus in your head. That's a good thing.

Dude, could you please learn that "lose" only has one "o". You make this mistake a lot, and it's starting to irritate me.

;)

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: screwtape on October 22, 2013, 01:41:10 PM
You are tying beliefs together because that is your belief in what God should be able to do.

That was poorly communicated.  I do not know what you are trying to say.

  What is your proof that God controls what happens to people in their lives, liking being in a car accident or getting cancer?

Why should I have proof of that?  I am an atheist.  I do not believe in any gods, let alone one who controls our slightest actions.

   You don't believe in God but you have a clear idea on what the scope of God's power is if he does exist.  That is a bit of compartmentalization and a disconnect in your thinking.   

Eh, no.  That would be you missing the point.  Let me try to get you back on track. 

There are people who believe in God (capital G). They claim this god is immaterial, invisible, undetectable, existing outside time and space (whatever that means) and, most importantly, omnimax - omnipotent, omniscient, and omnibenevolent.  Being omnipotent, omniscience and existing outside time (whatever that means) means this being understands how all actions and variables are interrelated.  It understands every output of the system given the inputs.  He knows how to produce any deisred outcome.  And, this is key, he can make it happen.  He can adjust the inputs or the system to get the desired outcomes.

And let me just reiterate, this is how theists define god.  I am simply using their definition.

So, given this god, we have to assume that it knows everything that will happen.  Not only that, but since it created the starting conditions, it made them happen.  It could have done things differently, but did not.  So car crashes, school shootings and ebola are all deliberately caused by God (capital G).  The universe is its [wiki]Rube Goldberg machine[/wiki].   

Why doesn't God just design us not to die at all if he is omnipotent and he can do anything.

Fantastic question.  You should ask that of religious people.  You might also aske why we were designed to eat other living things - thus causing them harm and suffering.

I think it makes more sense that if there is a God, he is more like an engineer who designs a car.

Well, you thought wrong.  You undershot. If God (capital G) is an engineer who designs cars, then he is also one who creates the roads, planets, molecules, and laws of physics.

  Some of the cars are going to have problems, some of them will fail earlier than others, and they will all fail at some point.

Yeah, you don't get it.  God is not a fallible human engineer constrained by physics and a tiny primate brain.




If he demonstrates that a system is irreducibly complex

How do you do that?  I think at best, you can only say you don't know how a system evolved.  That would then be an argument from ignorance.  You would be saying "I cannot imagine how this would have evolved, thus ID."  Which would be fallacious logic and a generally stiupid argument.

Behe used the flagellum as an example of IC.  But the flagellum had prior been used as a hypodermic or served other functions.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_of_flagella
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn13663-evolution-myths-the-bacterial-flagellum-is-irreducibly-complex.html
http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB200_1.html
 
Behe established nothing other than he is a religious horse's ass.
 
not answering the "data" that Behe and others have put forth.

It is good you have put "data" in quotes, since Neither Behe, nor anyone else, have put forth any data for IC.  They have made arguments, but not put forth any data.  I've looked.  There is none.


All they have to do is demonstrate that a system or organ is irreducibly complex,

How is that done?  How does someone show that there is no way that a system was of any use?  It could be that it was perfectly useful, but you just didn't figure it out.  Nope.  This is not how science works.

and it really isn't logical to think that there aren't many IC systems throughout the body.

Oh really?  Do tell.

Or do you deny that if they are IC, evolution can't account for them?

First of all, you offer a false choice.  Secondly, it is not a matter of evolution accounting for them. It is a matter of people figuring stuff out.  Just because we have a theory of evolution does not mean it lays open the answers for every question in minute detail.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 22, 2013, 02:41:20 PM
it really isn't logical to think that there aren't many IC systems throughout the body. 

Let's take your insides and put them into a snail. Would they fit? Would the snail need them? Do you even know how many structures are in your body which are not in a snail?

Imagine an amoeba like animal evolving into a larger animal say a "red herring". As the amoeba evolves larger and larger could it even immediately evolve complex organs which would fit inside it? or would they develop slowly as the animal needed the structures and the structures could fit inside the animal?

An elementary knowledge of biology should tell you the answer.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: nogodsforme on October 22, 2013, 04:11:46 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_of_the_eye

Very clear, lots of examples and pictures. Simple way to deal with the "what good is part of an eye" question. Part of an eye, depending on what you need that part to do, is much better than no part of an eye. And the human eye is far from the best possible eye design among animals with eyes. We have blind spots, upside-down design problems, limited distance and night vision, etc. that other animals don't have.

I am sitting here wearing trifocals. I have "part of an eye". It is far better than being blind. Like, a hand with five fingers is generally better than a hand with two fingers. But a hand with two or three fingers is way better than no hand at all.

A side note for science nerds like me: evolution even seems to have mechanisms for the "part of an eye" problem. Blind people develop better hearing. One part of a brain will compensate when another part is damaged. People who are right-handed and lose that hand can learn to write with the left hand.

So, if the "goal" of evolution is species survival, there are lots of fail-safes to try to ensure that even when there is damage, the organism might still survive to reproduce. Each stage of the development of the eye-- each "part of an eye" does some part of the job of helping the animal survive better.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 22, 2013, 05:42:38 PM
^^^ One wonders why creationists keep bringing up the eye. It's almost as if they've been living under a rock in the 211 years since Paley.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 22, 2013, 08:09:55 PM

  Abiogenesis has to deal in more speculative ideas and with environmental conditions that are extremely difficult to replicate.  Even if we do manage to produce abiogenesis in the lab it'll be highly unlikely to be a faithful replication of the actual historical processes that gave us the beginnings of life - because there are very many possible pathways. Abiogenesis is also not happening in nature anymore - because any emerging rudimentary biochemical system gets eaten by long established advanced microbes.

lol, this seems like circular logic.  You assert we don't know how the first lifeform originated from non-life  but then you assert that it is not happening in nature anymore as though you have proof it happened in nature even 1 time.   How do we know it isn't happening in nature anymore?   You also just assume that the system that lead to its creation is one that isn't around anymore but again, we don't know what biochemical system allowed it in the first place so we can't assert if it isn't around anymore.   You also assert there are very many possible pathways but how do we know if we don't even know what 1 of the pathways is. 

It isn't science to just say we can assume life can originate from non-life in a natural process because other possiblities don't seem possible to us.    Until we demonstrate that it is possible for life to come from non-life then we have to conclude it did not happen.  That does not mean we have to conclude that there is a God.   The only answer is we don't know b/c we have not proved anything.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 22, 2013, 08:28:39 PM

lol, this seems like circular logic.  You assert we don't know how the first lifeform originated from non-life  but then you assert that it is not happening in nature anymore as though you have proof it happened in nature even 1 time.   


No, he's saying we don't know how the first life began and you shouldn't pretend to by the use of irrational arguments.


It isn't science to just say we can assume life can originate from non-life in a natural process because other possiblities don't seem possible to us.    Until we demonstrate that it is possible for life to come from non-life then we have to conclude it did not happen.  That does not mean we have to conclude that there is a God.   The only answer is we don't know b/c we have not proved anything.


You just contradicted yourself. First you say, "we have to conclude it didn't happen". Then you say, "we don't know".

STOP PRETENDING TO KNOW WHAT IS IMPOSSIBLE!
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 22, 2013, 08:37:56 PM

lol, this seems like circular logic.  You assert we don't know how the first lifeform originated from non-life  but then you assert that it is not happening in nature anymore as though you have proof it happened in nature even 1 time.   


No, he's saying we don't know how the first life began and you shouldn't pretend to by the use of irrational arguments.


It isn't science to just say we can assume life can originate from non-life in a natural process because other possiblities don't seem possible to us.    Until we demonstrate that it is possible for life to come from non-life then we have to conclude it did not happen.  That does not mean we have to conclude that there is a God.   The only answer is we don't know b/c we have not proved anything.


You just contradicted yourself. First you say, "we have to conclude it didn't happen". Then you say, "we don't know".

STOP PRETENDING TO KNOW WHAT IS IMPOSSIBLE!


You think God is impossible right?   Lol.   So take your own advice.   :)

I did not mean to imply that it might not have happened only that at this point we don't know.  But there seems to be this assertion that it DID happen, not  and we just don't know how at this point.     THat is different from saying it might have happened.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 22, 2013, 08:41:25 PM
It isn't science to just say we can assume life can originate from non-life in a natural process because other possiblities don't seem possible to us.
Isn't that basically what you're doing?  You're saying that because the idea that life evolved complexity naturally doesn't seem possible to you, it therefore must have been designed (which is something that does seem possible to you).
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 22, 2013, 08:48:02 PM
It isn't science to just say we can assume life can originate from non-life in a natural process because other possiblities don't seem possible to us.
Isn't that basically what you're doing?  You're saying that because the idea that life evolved complexity naturally doesn't seem possible to you, it therefore must have been designed (which is something that does seem possible to you).

no, i'm  just saying Darwin evolution doesn't explain how gradual incremental changes over time lead to complex structures and system in lifeforms because these complex structures/systems cannot function without one of their parts and the parts by themselves have no value, and also the parts had to be organized in a certain way for them to work together  to fulfill the functionality of the complex system/structure.   

It doesn't seem possible to me based on this observation.   All I am trying to do is rule out Darwin evolution.   You are conflating an implication of the ruling out of Darwin evolution,  that of intelligent design,  with me just trying to rule out darwin evolution.     Intelligent design seems more possible than darwin evolution in terms of resulting in irreducible complexity,  in a theoritical and logical sense. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 22, 2013, 08:59:08 PM
All I am trying to do is rule out Darwin evolution.

Indeed.  Truth is a distant second to this goal.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 22, 2013, 09:01:57 PM
All I am trying to do is rule out Darwin evolution.

Indeed.  Truth is a distant second to this goal.

More rhetoric. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 22, 2013, 09:06:23 PM

You think God is impossible right?   Lol.   So take your own advice.   :)

I did not mean to imply that it might not have happened only that at this point we don't know.  But there seems to be this assertion that it DID happen, not  and we just don't know how at this point.     THat is different from saying it might have happened.


Don't put words in my mouth. I never said I thought God was impossible. You are the one making the claims to what you think is impossible, and up until just now you haven't been admitting that you don't know. You've been making arguments to the contrary and displaying your ignorance of evolutionary science. "Abiogenesis is impossible, therefore God is a better choice" (but it's not). You can't explain a mystery by an even bigger mystery.


If you are willing to admit that you don't know how life began (or how we got here) are now admitting that you are an Agnostic?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 22, 2013, 09:13:21 PM

Fantastic question.  You should ask that of religious people.  You might also aske why we were designed to eat other living things - thus causing them harm and suffering.

Well it makes sense that we were designed to eat simply because if we were not we would not be able to acquire the energy that our cells need to sustain life.   Designing us without the ability to eat would be like designing a car without a gas tank.   We need fuel.  Unleaded perferably.  LOL



I think it makes more sense that if there is a God, he is more like an engineer who designs a car.


Quote
Yeah, you don't get it.  God is not a fallible human engineer constrained by physics and a tiny primate brain.

lol, there you go again defining the scope of God's power even though you don't even believe God exists.   that would be his power if he did exist.  that cracks me up. 

i don't think you can assert that there is just one interpreation of what God can do because religious people don't all agree with other on that, even with a certain sect like Baptists there are disagreements on the nature of God.     
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 22, 2013, 09:17:23 PM

You think God is impossible right?   Lol.   So take your own advice.   :)

I did not mean to imply that it might not have happened only that at this point we don't know.  But there seems to be this assertion that it DID happen, not  and we just don't know how at this point.     THat is different from saying it might have happened.


Don't put words in my mouth. I never said I thought God was impossible. You are the one making the claims to what you think is impossible, and up until just now you haven't been admitting that you don't know. You've been making arguments to the contrary and displaying your ignorance of evolutionary science. "Abiogenesis is impossible, therefore God is a better choice" (but it's not). You can't explain a mystery by an even bigger mystery.


If you are willing to admit that you don't know how life began (or how we got here) are now admitting that you are an Agnostic?

I never implied a God was a "better choice",  I said they were equal possiblities in terms of both seem supernatural at this point ie not explainable by science as far as we know. 

I thought agnostic means you don't care how we got here.   Clearly I care.    I tend to fancy there is an intelligent designer of some sort but I don't think there is an afterlife or that he has control over what happens to us in our lives.     I guess that makes me half religious idiot , half super cool atheist.   :)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 22, 2013, 09:32:57 PM
Now, take Behe and the Discovery Institute. Tell me, Dr Tesla, of any original research completed by the Institute? Then tell me of any which they published in peer-reviewed Journals. The Institute and their supporters say that the peer-review system means that as people don't like their ideas, they are kept out of journals yet that is not the case. The reviewers are looking to see if the paper has good arguments and isn't just assertions without evidence - the real problem here - either that or the papers have already had their ideas shown to be untrue, like the flagellum idea.

So Dr Tesla, come up with the goods - show us some of the Institutes's original research and the publication data. If it is not in a peer reviewed journal it doesn't really count as science.

http://www.discovery.org/a/18301

Some money quotes:
 ID movement has developed a diverse research program bearing fruit in the form of more than 50 peer-reviewed scientific papers.

Some of the most important and groundbreaking work in the history of science first appeared in published form not in peer-reviewed scientific journal articles but in scientific books. That includes Copernicus' De Revolutionibus and Newton's Principia. Einstein's original paper on relativity was published in a scientific journal (Annalen der Physik), but did not undergo formal peer-review.1 Indeed, Darwin's own theory of evolution was first published in a book for a general and scientific audience -- his Origin of Species -- not in a peer-reviewed paper.

Moreover, important scientific work has not uncommonly been initially rejected by peer-reviewed journals. As a 2001 article in Science observed, "Mention 'peer review' and almost every scientist will regale you with stories about referees submitting nasty comments, sitting on a manuscript forever, or rejecting a paper only to repeat the study and steal the glory."2 Indeed, an article in the journal Science Communication by Juan Miguel Campanario notes that top journals such as "Science and Nature have also sometimes rejected significant papers," and in fact "Nature has even rejected work that eventually earned the Nobel Prize."


The Supreme Court Agrees

Even the U.S. Supreme Court has recognized that good science will not always be published in a peer-reviewed journal. In the landmark 1993 case Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals, Inc., the Court observed that while publication in peer-reviewed journals can be an indicator of legitimate science, it is not necessarily an indicator of good science:

   " Publication (which is but one element of peer review) is not a sine qua non of admissibility; it does not necessarily correlate with reliability, and in some instances well-grounded but innovative theories will not have been published. Some propositions, moreover, are too particular, too new, or of too limited interest to be published."

Another ID research group is the Evolutionary Informatics Lab, founded by senior Discovery Institute fellow William Dembski along with Robert Marks, Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Baylor University. Their lab has attracted graduate-student researchers and published multiple peer-reviewed articles in technical science and engineering journals showing that computer programming "points to the need for an ultimate information source qua intelligent designer."

Behe and ID  Research and Peer Review:
Other pro-ID scientists around the world are publishing peer-reviewed pro-ID scientific papers. These include biologist Ralph Seelke at the University of Wisconsin Superior, Wolf-Ekkehard Lönnig who recently retired from the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research in Germany, and Lehigh University biochemist Michael Behe.

These and other labs and researchers have published their work in a variety of appropriate technical venues, including peer-reviewed scientific journals, peer-reviewed scientific books (some published by mainstream university presses), trade-press books, peer-edited scientific anthologies, peer-edited scientific conference proceedings and peer-reviewed philosophy of science journals and books. These papers have appeared in scientific journals such as Protein Science, Journal of Molecular Biology, Theoretical Biology and Medical Modelling, Journal of Advanced Computational Intelligence and Intelligent Informatics, Quarterly Review of Biology, Cell Biology International, Rivista di Biologia/Biology Forum, Physics of Life Reviews, Annual Review of Genetics, and many others. At the same time, pro-ID scientists have presented their research at conferences worldwide in fields such as genetics, biochemistry, engineering, and computer science.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 22, 2013, 09:38:03 PM
All I am trying to do is rule out Darwin evolution.

Indeed.  Truth is a distant second to this goal.

More rhetoric.

Hardly.  You've finally stated that your only goal is to rule out evolution (I assume you meant "Darwinian" rather than "Darwin", the latter not being an adjective).  It being your only goal, as you've stated, all other goals on here must come behind it.  Truth/honesty included, which explains a great deal about your behavior.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 22, 2013, 09:44:04 PM
All I am trying to do is rule out Darwin evolution.

Indeed.  Truth is a distant second to this goal.

More rhetoric.

Hardly.  You've finally stated that your only goal is to rule out evolution (I assume you meant "Darwinian" rather than "Darwin", the latter not being an adjective).  It being your only goal, as you've stated, all other goals on here must come behind it.  Truth/honesty included, which explains a great deal about your behavior.

Your premise is truth and trying to rule out Darwin evolution theory MUST be at odds with each other.   This is a false premise. 

Thus,  we must conclude this is more rhetoric not empirical data and logical inference and induction.

Now I must sleep.   
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 22, 2013, 09:51:58 PM
I never implied a God was a "better choice",  I said they were equal possiblities in terms of both seem supernatural at this point ie not explainable by science as far as we know. 

I thought agnostic means you don't care how we got here.   Clearly I care.    I tend to fancy there is an intelligent designer of some sort but I don't think there is an afterlife or that he has control over what happens to us in our lives.     I guess that makes me half religious idiot , half super cool atheist.   :)

WTF? Agnostic means "don't care"? From where are you just making this shit up? Agnostic does NOT mean that. And yes, we know you "fancy" all sorts of things. But your fantasy isn't reality. God is not an "equal choice" to a scientific hypothesis that is based upon actual testing, data, research, and evidence (no way, no how). Once again, you simply CANNOT explain a mystery by positing another mystery and that term "God" that you keep throwing around has no referent (and no coherent definition).

Have you ever heard of the God of the Gaps argument? B/c that is what you keep positing here. It's a classic fallacy (aka - The Argument from Incredulity fallacy). Look it up.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 22, 2013, 10:31:18 PM
Your premise is truth and trying to rule out Darwin evolution theory MUST be at odds with each other.   This is a false premise.

No, my premise is that you're uninterested in truth, and have just admitted such.  Whether or not one happens to be right, coming at a question with the sole goal of discrediting one side is not an honest approach.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 22, 2013, 10:41:23 PM
It isn't science to just say we can assume life can originate from non-life in a natural process because other possiblities don't seem possible to us.

Isn't that basically what you're doing?  You're saying that because the idea that life evolved complexity naturally doesn't seem possible to you, it therefore must have been designed (which is something that does seem possible to you).

no, i'm  just saying Darwin evolution doesn't explain how gradual incremental changes over time lead to complex structures and system in lifeforms because these complex structures/systems cannot function without one of their parts and the parts by themselves have no value, and also the parts had to be organized in a certain way for them to work together  to fulfill the functionality of the complex system/structure.   

It doesn't seem possible to me based on this observation.   All I am trying to do is rule out Darwin evolution.   You are conflating an implication of the ruling out of Darwin evolution,  that of intelligent design,  with me just trying to rule out darwin evolution.     Intelligent design seems more possible than darwin evolution in terms of resulting in irreducible complexity,  in a theoritical and logical sense.
Let's not play word games, shall we?  It isn't scientific to assume that something isn't true simply because it doesn't make sense to you, or doesn't seem possible to you.  That means that your opinion on this subject - that evolution doesn't seem possible - is not a scientific one.  That also means your approach, trying to rule out evolution based on that opinion, is not logical.  Indeed, it is highly illogical and irrational, because you are substituting a belief that you hold - that evolution is impossible - for actual scientific methodology.

The scientific method has six steps.  1.  Make observations; 2.  Formulate a hypothesis to explain the observations; 3.  Perform an experiment to test the hypothesis; 4.  Analyze the results of your experiment to determine whether the hypothesis is accurate; 5.  Revise your hypothesis as needed; 6.  Communicate your hypothesis to others so they can review it and test it for themselves.

You basically skipped steps 3-5 entirely.  You made an observation, that complex structures didn't seem like they could have evolved naturally, and formulated the hypothesis that evolutionary theory therefore wasn't true.  But you went straight from there to communicating your hypothesis to others - without having checked it on your own first - and worse still, you are basically refusing to listen to the people who are trying to tell you that your hypothesis doesn't work, and you're insisting that it's right because it seems more possible to you than evolution.

Science is not about what deciding what seems possible or impossible based on observations.  Science is about using data to check observations and hypotheses against reality.

It's bad enough that you didn't do that in the first place, but it's inexcusable for you to say that you aren't interested in doing it at all.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 22, 2013, 10:44:43 PM
Darwinian Evolution and Evolution is the same thing; one just has someone's name attached to it. It isn't so much that people are trying to disprove Evolution, they are attempting to disprove Darwin--or to be more succinct: that he, not God, came up with Evolution. Therefore, the fight isn't over Evolution per sè, it's over a man being more intelligent than God.

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Add Homonym on October 22, 2013, 11:04:18 PM
I never implied a God was a "better choice",  I said they were equal possiblities in terms of both seem supernatural at this point ie not explainable by science as far as we know. 

I thought agnostic means you don't care how we got here.   Clearly I care.    I tend to fancy there is an intelligent designer of some sort but I don't think there is an afterlife or that he has control over what happens to us in our lives.     I guess that makes me half religious idiot , half super cool atheist.   :)

NOTE TO PEOPLE WHO DONT READ ALL THE WAY THROUGH POSTS

Tesla has just identified as a non-afterlife DEIST.


In which case, it should be pointed out that irreducible complexity is different to intelligent design. IC asserts that a genetic structure cannot evolve in a sequential, or traceable manner. IC is the proposition that God interfered and inserted a whole bunch of genes simultaneously. Whereas, ID could also be the proposition that God keeps sequentially nudging evolution in important directions. That case of ID is indistinguishable from evolution.

With this in mind, IC is effectively the idea that God could not sequentially poke life into higher forms (because it's too slow or difficult), and would have to use massive gene insertion techniques, to create whole organs.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 22, 2013, 11:05:05 PM
I thought agnostic means you don't care how we got here.   
You really need to learn how to use Google. You're "understanding" of terms should an embarrassment to you with an internet connected computer at your literal fingertips.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 22, 2013, 11:07:16 PM
Darwinian Evolution and Evolution is the same thing; one just has someone's name attached to it. It isn't so much that people are trying to disprove Evolution, they are attempting to disprove Darwin--or to be more succinct: that he, not God, came up with Evolution. Therefore, the fight isn't over Evolution per sè, it's over a man being more intelligent than God.

-Nam

Nam, I'm a bit confused by this. On the face of it, one could almost draw the conclusion that you think Darwin somehow created evolution. Now, I know you don't think that so could you clarify the point you are making?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 22, 2013, 11:09:34 PM
Not sure how you could possibly get that from Nam's post.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 22, 2013, 11:14:16 PM
Not sure how you could possibly get that from Nam's post.

This:

It isn't so much that people are trying to disprove Evolution, they are attempting to disprove Darwin--or to be more succinct: that he, not God, came up with Evolution.


Bold mine. Some Christians accept that God is behind the process of evolution. To me, Nam's comment could be construed to suggest that Darwin is behind it. Like I said, though, I know he couldn't think that so I await clarification.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 22, 2013, 11:24:15 PM
Not sure how you could possibly get that from Nam's post.

Oxymoron: brilliant idiocy.

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 22, 2013, 11:25:46 PM
Not sure how you could possibly get that from Nam's post.

This:

It isn't so much that people are trying to disprove Evolution, they are attempting to disprove Darwin--or to be more succinct: that he, not God, came up with Evolution.


Bold mine. Some Christians accept that God is behind the process of evolution. To me, Nam's comment could be construed to suggest that Darwin is behind it. Like I said, though, I know he couldn't think that so I await clarification.


Neither Biblegod  or Darwin is behind Evolution; Evolution is, and always has been, and always will be.

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 22, 2013, 11:35:13 PM
I am trying to disprove Darwinism.   

Good luck with the Nobel Prize, no one else has disproved it.


I've never pretended to be an expert on anything.  I am not trying to prove anything, I am just stating what I think about the topic.   I don't think this issue is going to be decided by people talking about it on the internet so why be so serious about it.   Just pretend we are in college  in our dorm rooms and we are just talking about stuff.     I would have to be getting paid to want to prove anything  and I would need to go back to college to study biochemistry and genetics, etc.     I read one of these scholarly papers by Behe last night dealing with something about cellular proteins and it was like trying to read a foreign language.

Being an expert is so..oooo difficult. Is that the end of the Nobel Prize?


All I am trying to do is rule out Darwin evolution.

That Nobel Prize is looming again. Patience is a virtue, unfortunately ignorance is not.

"Nature has even rejected work that eventually earned the Nobel Prize."

Keep pretending to be an expert in your following posts. I like to laugh at how you confuse yourself.



Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Add Homonym on October 22, 2013, 11:47:28 PM

Another ID research group is the Evolutionary Informatics Lab, founded by senior Discovery Institute fellow William Dembski along with Robert Marks, Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Baylor University. Their lab has attracted graduate-student researchers and published multiple peer-reviewed articles in technical science and engineering journals showing that computer programming "points to the need for an ultimate information source qua intelligent designer."


This is what I got, when I followed up on Dembski.

Dembski is a theologian and jack of all trades, who founded the evoinfo.org think tank. He has published this feature paper, but obviously there is no way to peer review it, since it's waffle, based on his idea of Law of Conservation of Information.
http://www.evoinfo.org/papers/ConsInfo_NoN.pdf

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Specified_complexity

So, he's bitten off more than he can chew. First prove that LCI or Specified Complexity is even true, before using it to prove things.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 22, 2013, 11:52:09 PM
Not sure how you could possibly get that from Nam's post.

This:

It isn't so much that people are trying to disprove Evolution, they are attempting to disprove Darwin--or to be more succinct: that he, not God, came up with Evolution.


Bold mine. Some Christians accept that God is behind the process of evolution. To me, Nam's comment could be construed to suggest that Darwin is behind it. Like I said, though, I know he couldn't think that so I await clarification.


Neither Biblegod  or Darwin is behind Evolution; Evolution is, and always has been, and always will be.

-Nam

Then how is it Darwin, rather than his theory, that 'they' are trying to disprove? Thats what i didn't understand from your post.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 22, 2013, 11:59:43 PM
Because Darwinism and Evolution is the same thing. Most Christians (and others) think they are two separate things. They know they can't disprove Evolution (why? I don't know, ask them) but if they stick Darwin's name to it (since it's his theory), then, they can properly argue against it.

They don't (for the most part) argue against gravity (as an example), if they did they'd call it Newtonian Gravity. Silly, ain't it.

I think that's the point.

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 23, 2013, 12:04:21 AM
I see what you're saying. Don't see it myself, but thats oK.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 23, 2013, 12:49:10 AM

lol, this seems like circular logic.  You assert we don't know how the first lifeform originated from non-life  but then you assert that it is not happening in nature anymore as though you have proof it happened in nature even 1 time.   


No, he's saying we don't know how the first life began and you shouldn't pretend to by the use of irrational arguments.


It isn't science to just say we can assume life can originate from non-life in a natural process because other possiblities don't seem possible to us.    Until we demonstrate that it is possible for life to come from non-life then we have to conclude it did not happen.  That does not mean we have to conclude that there is a God.   The only answer is we don't know b/c we have not proved anything.


You just contradicted yourself. First you say, "we have to conclude it didn't happen". Then you say, "we don't know".

STOP PRETENDING TO KNOW WHAT IS IMPOSSIBLE!


Discussing anything with Tesla is like discussing something with two idiots at the same time. He is so busy contradicting himself that he never reads or tries to understand what other people write.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wheels5894 on October 23, 2013, 03:15:38 AM

I never implied a God was a "better choice",  I said they were equal possibilities in terms of both seem supernatural at this point ie not explainable by science as far as we know. 

I thought agnostic means you don't care how we got here.   Clearly I care.    I tend to fancy there is an intelligent designer of some sort but I don't think there is an afterlife or that he has control over what happens to us in our lives.     I guess that makes me half religious idiot , half super cool atheist.   :)

Well to start with, have you looked up abiogenesis anywhere to find out what we already know? Have a look here at the Wiki (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abiogenesis) to see a summation of our present knowledge. You will see that far from being in the dark we have quite a few ideas that are being worked on - especially the 60s experiment, the Miller–Urey experiment, which produced quite a lot of building blocks of life in a very short time. 

So we are on our way to explaining the origins of life and have quite a lot of work done. Now, we ought to compare the work done to demonstrate the existence of a god. Let's see..... we have... Oh, the various holy books, philosophy and.... See the difference? There is nothing to show that we ought even to consider another being to explain the origin of life - it only adds complications such has who or what made the god.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 23, 2013, 04:29:33 AM
lol, this seems like circular logic.
Nice dodge. Dive into a new topic of abiogenesis to avoid dealing with the problems you're having with your own claims about the  "irreducible complexity" of penises and flagella and such like.

If you want to talk in detail about abiogenesis then start another thread, or read the ones already freely available (search function) for your edification.  And if you do start a thread on abiogenesis, please be ready to explain how your clever deity assembled itself and its knowledge from non-life so we don't get bogged down in the quagmire of the mother of all circular logics.

Just briefly before we get back onto the topic of this thread let us clear up one little piece of your nongness on abiogenesis:
How do we know it isn't happening in nature anymore? 
In an environment of non-life, when and where the first self-replicating biopolymers would have formed, there could have been no existing microbial forms ... or let's call them "bugs" for our purposes here. 

Nowdays (on earth) at this stage of evolution the place is totally smothered in bacteria ... sorry "bugs".  Any biopolymers floating around are "num-nums" for "bugs".  (I'm using words like "num-nums" because it seems to be appropriate for your current understanding of biochemistry.  I'm sorry if it sounds like I'm talking down but I'm trying to make it easier for you to absorb.)

Elsewhere in the vast universe, on fresh planets with no extant predatory life, some water and some energy gradients to exploit, I'd wager that abiogenesis is still happening.  But on earth the opportunity is long gone.

BTW how are you progressing with the homework I gave you in replies #306 - 308?  Are you advanced enough yet to discuss how evolution goes much faster than you previously thought possible.  And how that speed plus duplication and redundancy can explain apparent IC?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 07:43:33 AM
It isn't science to just say we can assume life can originate from non-life in a natural process because other possiblities don't seem possible to us.

Isn't that basically what you're doing?  You're saying that because the idea that life evolved complexity naturally doesn't seem possible to you, it therefore must have been designed (which is something that does seem possible to you).

no, i'm  just saying Darwin evolution doesn't explain how gradual incremental changes over time lead to complex structures and system in lifeforms because these complex structures/systems cannot function without one of their parts and the parts by themselves have no value, and also the parts had to be organized in a certain way for them to work together  to fulfill the functionality of the complex system/structure.   

It doesn't seem possible to me based on this observation.   All I am trying to do is rule out Darwin evolution.   You are conflating an implication of the ruling out of Darwin evolution,  that of intelligent design,  with me just trying to rule out darwin evolution.     Intelligent design seems more possible than darwin evolution in terms of resulting in irreducible complexity,  in a theoritical and logical sense.
Let's not play word games, shall we?  It isn't scientific to assume that something isn't true simply because it doesn't make sense to you, or doesn't seem possible to you.  That means that your opinion on this subject - that evolution doesn't seem possible - is not a scientific one.  That also means your approach, trying to rule out evolution based on that opinion, is not logical.  Indeed, it is highly illogical and irrational, because you are substituting a belief that you hold - that evolution is impossible - for actual scientific methodology.

The scientific method has six steps.  1.  Make observations; 2.  Formulate a hypothesis to explain the observations; 3.  Perform an experiment to test the hypothesis; 4.  Analyze the results of your experiment to determine whether the hypothesis is accurate; 5.  Revise your hypothesis as needed; 6.  Communicate your hypothesis to others so they can review it and test it for themselves.

You basically skipped steps 3-5 entirely.  You made an observation, that complex structures didn't seem like they could have evolved naturally, and formulated the hypothesis that evolutionary theory therefore wasn't true.  But you went straight from there to communicating your hypothesis to others - without having checked it on your own first - and worse still, you are basically refusing to listen to the people who are trying to tell you that your hypothesis doesn't work, and you're insisting that it's right because it seems more possible to you than evolution.

Science is not about what deciding what seems possible or impossible based on observations.  Science is about using data to check observations and hypotheses against reality.

It's bad enough that you didn't do that in the first place, but it's inexcusable for you to say that you aren't interested in doing it at all.

Have there been experiments conducted that demonstrate cross species evolution?   I thought they mostly just try to say the fossil record backs them up.  I guess that pepper moth hoax that is still in our kiddie's science textbooks is their experiment.   

Darwin himself proposed that irreducible complexity of an organ would prove his theory wrong.   So obviously it is a scientific observation unless now you don't think Darwin was a scientist.  By the way, Behe knows a lot more than Darwin did, who didn't know anything about DNA and molecular biology,   and I thought I read somewhere that Darwin didn't do well in college and he actually did better in his religion classes than his science ones.   

I think if  Behe and others can demonstrate that something is irreducibly complex and the Darwins can't no propose a logical Darwin evolutionary pathway to achieve the IC,  then when we weight the two opposing ideas together we must conclude Behe is right on this.    Again, it is logical and"scientific"  to argue that a process of slow gradual change in nature  is probably not going to be able to account for a complex structure/system in which all the parts must be present at once for it to work AND all the parts need to be arranged in a certain way so that they can work together.    Again, if one of these parts is removed, the system doesn't work so it cannot have evolved in a direct way by just enhancing the initial function.    The part by itself has no value , it only has value in the system.

So IC is about checking hypothesis, Darwin's,  against reality by looking at an end product that is irreducibly complex and asking,  can evolution account for this and what is the pathway?   If Darwin's people have no answer then doubt must be cast onto the theory.  I don't like it anymore than you do.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 23, 2013, 07:50:44 AM
Have there been experiments conducted that demonstrate cross species evolution? 

Experiments are not required.  Foxy Freedom already told you about ring species. They prove the concept.  But even without that proof, the thing you lack a deeper understanding of is the very word "species".  Read up on that and it should become clear.  But I'd prefer if you first looked at the other homework I gave you.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wheels5894 on October 23, 2013, 08:10:56 AM
Dr Tesla,

Please either tell us about anything in nature which is irreducibly complex - so, by definition, must have arisen as a whole and not just evolved using other parts (the flagellum)  and we will be the first to congratulate you on proving evolution is wrong.

Well, either that or concede there is no such thing.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Add Homonym on October 23, 2013, 08:24:24 AM
I think if  Behe and others can demonstrate that something is irreducibly complex and the Darwins can't no propose a logical Darwin evolutionary pathway to achieve the IC,  then when we weight the two opposing ideas together we must conclude Behe is right on this.    Again, it is logical and"scientific"  to argue that a process of slow gradual change in nature  is probably not going to be able to account for a complex structure/system in which all the parts must be present at once for it to work AND all the parts need to be arranged in a certain way so that they can work together.    Again, if one of these parts is removed, the system doesn't work so it cannot have evolved in a direct way by just enhancing the initial function.    The part by itself has no value , it only has value in the system.

This whole paragraph just got blurted out of your Creationist's Cut and Paste troll book.

Quote
I think if  Behe and others can demonstrate that something is irreducibly complex

They can't demonstrate it.

Quote
Again, if one of these parts is removed, the system doesn't work so it cannot have evolved in a direct way by just enhancing the initial function.    The part by itself has no value , it only has value in the system.

Which part were you thinking of? Why would a system lose parts, if each incremental part was useful? Of course, if I look at the eye, and say an eye won't work with the retina removed, then this is correct, unless the eye then turns into salt and pepper stand. But, you don't get to play creationist picks what part to remove. The structures evolved in a way which is not irreducibly complex.

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 08:45:31 AM



Which part were you thinking of? Why would a system lose parts, if each incremental part was useful? Of course, if I look at the eye, and say an eye won't work with the retina removed, then this is correct, unless the eye then turns into salt and pepper stand. But, you don't get to play creationist picks what part to remove. The structures evolved in a way which is not irreducibly complex.

You are not understanding my point, or what IC means.   Nobody is saying a system loses parts.   What we are saying is the structure needs all its parts to work.  If one part were removed, then the structure/sysem would not work.   Thus, the eye could not have developed in a piecemeal, incremental way that Darwins propose that it could via evolution.     It has to evolve directly into the complex system with all the parts there at once and arranged in a way that allows them to fullfill the function of vision, or whatever,  which would mean that it wasn't the gradual incremental change proposed by Darwins. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Add Homonym on October 23, 2013, 08:53:19 AM
  Thus, the eye could not have developed in a piecemeal, incremental way that Darwins propose that it could via evolution.

Incremental is not piecemeal. Piecemeal is assembled randomly.

I point out that you can't remove much of a human, without it failing. People can survive without gall bladders, but if someone removes your bladder, you don't last very long. All organs were accumulated in a way, where they made sense at the time.


Quote
It has to evolve directly into the complex system with all the parts there at once and arranged in a way that allows them to fullfill the function of vision, or whatever,  which would mean that it wasn't the gradual incremental change proposed by Darwins.

I respond that a God could think of a way to prod useful parts into an animal that would eventually become an eye. A God could produce an animal in a way that evolved, and was not IC.

The problem with IC, is when you think it through, you are saying something you don't realise. You look at the eye, and see an eye, but for an eye to work, it needs a whole optic nerve and visual cortex, plus the animal needs to know what colours mean, and what to do about it, and how to hunt. The whole instinct library needs to be installed, to work with an eye.

IC proposes that some kind of blind newt was walking around, and suddenly, in the next generation, there was an eye, with a brain ready to process it, and the animal knew how to hunt, and changed its habits to work visually.



Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 23, 2013, 08:54:51 AM
Have there been experiments conducted that demonstrate cross species evolution?   I thought they mostly just try to say the fossil record backs them up.  I guess that pepper moth hoax that is still in our kiddie's science textbooks is their experiment.
There is no pepper moth hoax.  That's a creationist lie that you've fallen for hook, line, and sinker.

It was a creationist professor of law, Phillip E. Johnston, not even a scientist at all, who first made this accusation in 1999.  Yet when actual scientists revisited the classic experiments in 1998, they took numerous pictures of live peppered moths resting on tree trunks.  This included gluing dead pepper moths onto tree trunks for an experiment, in this case to see how the density of peppered moths on tree trunks affected how birds might feed on them.  In other words, it was scientists reviewing another's work for errors, not trying to prove that some hoax existed.

This is all easily-available information.  I found it in five minutes via Google.  Yet it seems you'd rather continue believing in the "peppered moth hoax" that creationists bleat about than take in information that contradicts what you already believe to be true.  And this illustrates the more general problem you have here.  You would rather continue to believe in intelligent design and irreducible complexity than take time to learn about things that contradict those two ideas.

So yes, there have been experiments that have shown rapid evolutionary change.  1. (http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/lines/IVCexperiments.shtml) Guppy males that live in water with less predators tend to be more colorful.  When scientists introduced predators into those waters, the number of guppy males born with dull colors declined sharply.  2. (http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/early/2012/10/25/rsbl.2012.0945.full) This is a scholarly paper that discusses the field of experimental evolution; while it's necessarily somewhat general, it's a good read.

Quote from: DrTesla
Darwin himself proposed that irreducible complexity of an organ would prove his theory wrong.   So obviously it is a scientific observation unless now you don't think Darwin was a scientist.
Nobody is disputing that Darwin was a scientist, but the fact of the matter is that he pioneered the work on evolution, which means that subsequent work would have tested his conclusions over and over again until other people were satisfied that they were accurate.  Furthermore, you are being dishonest here.  Darwin proposed a mechanism by which his hypothesis could be falsified - it is not the same thing as observing such an "irreducibly complex" organ, as you imply here.

Quote from: DrTesla
By the way, Behe knows a lot more than Darwin did, who didn't know anything about DNA and molecular biology,   and I thought I read somewhere that Darwin didn't do well in college and he actually did better in his religion classes than his science ones.
As I already stated, Darwin pioneered evolutionary theory, and other scientists came along afterward and tested it, over and over again.  So trying to claim that Behe was more knowledgeable than Darwin is irrelevant - Behe is standing on the shoulders of all those others who followed Darwin, so of course he has more knowledge available than Darwin did.  But that would be true of just about any scientist working in the field of biology today, so this point is totally irrelevant.

Quote from: DrTesla
I think if  Behe and others can demonstrate that something is irreducibly complex and the Darwins can't no propose a logical Darwin evolutionary pathway to achieve the IC,  then when we weight the two opposing ideas together we must conclude Behe is right on this.
All Behe and his ilk have ever done are point to some complex organ (such as the eye or bacterial flagellum) and then claim that it's so complex that it can't have evolved, so this is a moot point.  This is what you keep missing - these 'demonstrations' of so-called "irreducible complexity" are invariably attempts to dismiss evolutionary theory by fiat.

Not only that, but other scientists can and have pointed to flaws in his claims, such as Kenneth Miller's rebuttal of his bacterial flagellum argument.  Behe's response has been to move the goalposts - instead of actually trying to defend his claim of irreducible complexity on that particular organ, he moves on to claim that something else is irreducibly complex instead.  What do you think this unwillingness to defend his actual claims means, DrTesla?

Quote from: DrTesla
Again, it is logical and"scientific"  to argue that a process of slow gradual change in nature  is probably not going to be able to account for a complex structure/system in which all the parts must be present at once for it to work AND all the parts need to be arranged in a certain way so that they can work together.
It is neither logical nor scientific.  It is an argument from incredulity, a logical fallacy (which means it is not logical), and it does not make any effort to actually show (via experiment to test these so-called 'observations') that this process of slow gradual change could not have accounted for complex organic structures and/or systems, which means it is not scientific either.  I called you on this in my last post, and you don't seem to have gotten it.

Quote from: DrTesla
Again, if one of these parts is removed, the system doesn't work so it cannot have evolved in a direct way by just enhancing the initial function.    The part by itself has no value , it only has value in the system.
This is nothing but the same illogical (and more importantly, rebutted) argument from incredulity that you keep repeating.  Repetition doesn't provide veracity.

Quote from: DrTesla
So IC is about checking hypothesis, Darwin's,  against reality by looking at an end product that is irreducibly complex and asking,  can evolution account for this and what is the pathway?   If Darwin's people have no answer then doubt must be cast onto the theory.
No, irreducible complexity is about trying to fool people into discarding a valid scientific theory in favor of creationism.  What you keep failing to understand is that scientists have long since shown that these supposedly "irreducibly complex" organs are anything but.  Yet people who argue in favor of irreducible complexity (including you) blithely ignore those proofs and any other rebuttals of their pet belief and simply keep on repeating the same failed arguments, as if they can make it true by simply repeating themselves often enough.

Quote from: DrTesla
I don't like it anymore than you do.
I doubt that very much.  You don't 'like' something that you want to do?  If you actually didn't like it, you would spend some time actually checking irreducible complexity against reality - that is to say, you would check to make sure that something you personally agreed with was actually reflected by reality.  Instead, you just keep repeating yourself about how it's 'logical' and 'scientific', no matter how many times you're rebutted.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wheels5894 on October 23, 2013, 09:06:27 AM
Dr Tesla,

1. Evolution of the eye is well illustrated in the video below which comes from television and is quite long. Watch it though as it illustrates the stages with current live animals.
http://youtu.be/mb9_x1wgm7E (http://youtu.be/mb9_x1wgm7E)

2. Please respond to my post above and suggest some IC part of an animal or plant which could not have evolved naturally.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: ParkingPlaces on October 23, 2013, 09:53:20 AM
Dr. T

If one things is to complex to evolve, then all things are too complex to evolve. Why aren't those that get their hots from IC not complaining about balance, possum tails, fingernails, tongues, earlobes, coordination, kneecaps and hair? If complexity is a problem, it should be a problem for everything. Yet your heroes limit their complaints to just the same few items (tails on flagellum, eyes, peppered moths and a very few other things).

If one thing is obviously impossible, then all things should be equally impossible. If the process can't build an eyeball, then it can't build the mechanism that causes dandruff either. Everything from flower stamens and mushroom gills to gall bladders and livers should be automatically complex, and hence subject to attack. Why, for instance, is the spleen too complex to evolve? The sternum?

Your guys should have a million examples, not just a few. Incredulity is not an inherently limiting factor in the life of those who have a lot of it. Why do so few things fail to pass muster with the IC crowd?

In other words, does their short list mean that they accept that all other biological mechanisms could evolve easily. That they have issues with only the same few things? Over and over and over ad nauseum?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: wheels5894 on October 23, 2013, 10:05:06 AM
Well, I can think of one thing that is irreducibly complex and thus had to have had a Designer. Without a Designer what I am thinking of could not function right and would not, in all probability exist at all. That complex thing is, of course

GOD

As is obvious, it was people, or rather men since women weren't involved in running the cult in the Stone and Iron Age times, who dreamed up this idea of a god, who gave it its powers and gave it a name. It was men, as priests, who demanded worship for their creation and who, more importantly, demanded sacrifices to this god. Even today, money, for god's work is expected even though it only goes to the clergy and so on.

So, how about that? Can anyone think of anything else that has a designer?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: screwtape on October 23, 2013, 10:16:53 AM

Fantastic question.  You should ask that of religious people.  You might also aske why we were designed to eat other living things - thus causing them harm and suffering.

Well it makes sense that we were designed to eat simply because if we were not we would not be able to acquire the energy that our cells need to sustain life.   Designing us without the ability to eat would be like designing a car without a gas tank.   We need fuel.  Unleaded perferably.  LOL


lol.  Way to miss the point.  Again.  Lol!  There are ways to acquire energy other than eating other living things, are there not?  Lol.  Think hard.  Do you know any living things that acquire energy, but don't eat?  Hmmm.  What could it be?  click here for the answer, but only after you've actually tried. -->[1]

lol. You are starting to give me the impression you are not actually here to have a conversation, since you don't seem to be paying any attention to any posts beyond sorting through them to see what you need to object to.   Lol.  That often happens here when some semi-smart person shows up spouting their beloved-but-only-half-thought-through ideas and face a barrage of objections they'd not considered.  lol.  They panic (lol), get defensive (lol) and rather than actually consider their ideas my be wrong (lol!), take the whole thing personally.  Lol.  You seem to be in that mode.  Lol (lol).  Or you are just too stupid to understand the point.  That is a distinct possibility. Lol.

And your use of lol is fucking annoying.  lol.



lol, there you go again defining the scope of God's power even though you don't even believe God exists.   that would be his power if he did exist.  that cracks me up. 

This is a stupid and dismissive comment.  I took pains to explain that I gathered my definition of god - and thus his scope of power - from theists.  Somehow you utterly ignored that.  It seems to me you think I should not comment on any of god's alleged greatness, since I am not a believer.  How am I to point out inconsistencies? 

I do my best to accurately represent their definition.  If I am wrong, point out how so.  Simply saying I don't believe, thus I am wrong is a lazy argument at best.

You are not a believer in evolution.  Does that mean you are not allowed to accurately describe evolution?


i don't think you can assert that there is just one interpretation of what God can do because religious people don't all agree with other on that, even with a certain sect like Baptists there are disagreements on the nature of God.   

It is not a sectarian question.  It is a very old philosophical one.  If they have not thought through the implications of omnipotence, that is not my fault and just an indication of their confused theology.  IN fact, that is my whole point.  They don't get to have it both ways.

If there is some strange denomination that defines omnipotence in some other way, then obviously my argument does not apply. 

jesus, you're thick.


edit - you also ignored a ton of relevant points in my post.  In particular those that shoot holes in your idol, Behe.

edit 2 - fixed first paragraph. blah.  Thanks Az.
 1. plants!
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 23, 2013, 10:34:27 AM
edit - you also ignored a ton of relevant points in my post.  In particular those that shoot holes in your idol, Behe.
Imagine that.  It's almost as if he doesn't have a response and is hoping that we'll eventually stop asking if he just keeps his mouth shut long enough.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Mrjason on October 23, 2013, 10:38:19 AM
You are not a believer in evolution.  Does that mean you are not allowed to accurately describe evolution?

To be fair he's actually doing a pretty good job on this one.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 23, 2013, 10:42:21 AM
edit - you also ignored a ton of relevant points in my post.  In particular those that shoot holes in your idol, Behe.
Imagine that.  It's almost as if he doesn't have a response and is hoping that we'll eventually stop asking if he just keeps his mouth shut long enough.

I don't think he realizes this is our website (in reference more to the veterans, rather than just atheists, though I think all the veterans here are atheists) ;)

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 11:53:45 AM

lol.  Way to miss the point.  Again.  Lol!  There are ways to acquire energy other than eating other living things, are there not?  Lol.  Think hard.  Do you know any living things that acquire energy, but don't eat?  Hmmm.  What could it be?  click here for the answer, but only after you've actually tried. -->[1]
 1. plants!

I'm pretty sure humans need more energy to sustain life than other more primitive lifeforms.  Thus,  the theoritical God would have to design us with the ability to acquire the level of energy required for us to sustain life.  Aka the ability to eat other species of life.  Also, isn't the food chain  beneficial in comprenhensive way , although not so much for the ones who are consumed.  lol


Quote
lol. You are starting to give me the impression you are not actually here to have a conversation, since you don't seem to be paying any attention to any posts beyond sorting through them to see what you need to object to.   Lol.  That often happens here when some semi-smart person shows up spouting their beloved-but-only-half-thought-through ideas and face a barrage of objections they'd not considered.  lol.  They panic (lol), get defensive (lol) and rather than actually consider their ideas my be wrong (lol!), take the whole thing personally.  Lol.  You seem to be in that mode.  Lol (lol).  Or you are just too stupid to understand the point.  That is a distinct possibility. Lol.
More rhetoric,  possibly meant to obscure my logical posts in addition to my information defending Behe's reputation.

Quote
And your use of lol is fucking annoying.  lol.
lol just means "laugh out loud".   It is common internet jargon.  You must be a novice on the internet.   Does laughing offend you?   lol

Quote
It is not a sectarian question.  It is a very old philosophical one.  If they have not thought through the implications of omnipotence, that is not my fault and just an indication of their confused theology.  IN fact, that is my whole point.  They don't get to have it both ways.

You don't think that a biblical and theoretical God who designed/created lifeforms is  powerful enough without expanding that power to include control over the events in every lifeform's personal lives?   Not to mention that somehow he creates a theoretical heaven and can pull theoretical souls into theoretical heaven after they die. 

My point is you are saying that God must be able to do x,y,z if he does exist after you assert God does not exist.   You then say you base this on what religious people's beliefs which you assert should be x, even if it just y and z for some of them, and then we must note you view religious people as "idiots"  yet you are looking to them for a definition of God's power.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 23, 2013, 12:00:43 PM
People created "God", they'd know its power. "God" sure as hell doesn't know. And the only one I see here who's primitive, is you, and those in accordance of you.

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 12:11:55 PM
Dr. T

If one things is to complex to evolve, then all things are too complex to evolve. Why aren't those that get their hots from IC not complaining about balance, possum tails, fingernails, tongues, earlobes, coordination, kneecaps and hair? If complexity is a problem, it should be a problem for everything. Yet your heroes limit their complaints to just the same few items (tails on flagellum, eyes, peppered moths and a very few other things).

If one thing is obviously impossible, then all things should be equally impossible. If the process can't build an eyeball, then it can't build the mechanism that causes dandruff either. Everything from flower stamens and mushroom gills to gall bladders and livers should be automatically complex, and hence subject to attack. Why, for instance, is the spleen too complex to evolve? The sternum?

Your guys should have a million examples, not just a few. Incredulity is not an inherently limiting factor in the life of those who have a lot of it. Why do so few things fail to pass muster with the IC crowd?

In other words, does their short list mean that they accept that all other biological mechanisms could evolve easily. That they have issues with only the same few things? Over and over and over ad nauseum?

Your argument is specious.   First, it assumes there are not thousands of irreducible complex systems/organs in lifeforms.   Just because we don't talk about all of them at once doesn't mean there are not numerous ones.   You are also blurring the definition of what is meant by complex.   Things can be complex but not irreducibly complex.  In other words, they could have originated by gradual incremental change via Darwin evolution.   

 We must examine how they were built, not simply are they complex or not.  If we remove one part from an irreducibly complex system,  it will not work.  The parts by themselves also have no function , at least related to the system's function.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 12:13:40 PM
People created "God", they'd know its power. "God" sure as hell doesn't know. And the only one I see here who's primitive, is you, and those in accordance of you.

-Nam

lol, well your pretentious comment is somewhat amusing given you have an animated devil with a pitchfork as your avatar.  One might argue that primitive ideas appeal to you.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 12:15:24 PM
This is Dr. Behe  laying it out:

The Origin of Species Darwin stated 6:

If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down.

A system which meets Darwin's criterion is one which exhibits irreducible complexity. By irreducible complexity I mean a single system which is composed of several interacting parts that contribute to the basic function, and where the removal of any one of the parts causes the system to effectively cease functioning. An irreducibly complex system cannot be produced gradually by slight, successive modifications of a precursor system, since any precursor to an irreducibly complex system is by definition nonfunctional. Since natural selection requires a function to select, an irreducibly complex biological system, if there is such a thing, would have to arise as an integrated unit for natural selection to have anything to act on. It is almost universally conceded that such a sudden event would be irreconcilable with the gradualism Darwin envisioned. At this point, however, 'irreducibly complex' is just a term, whose power resides mostly in its definition. We must now ask if any real thing is in fact irreducibly complex, and, if so, then are any irreducibly complex things also biological systems.

Consider the humble mousetrap (Figure 1). The mousetraps that my family uses in our home to deal with unwelcome rodents consist of a number of parts. There are: (1) a flat wooden platform to act as a base; (2) a metal hammer, which does the actual job of crushing the little mouse; (3) a wire spring with extended ends to press against the platform and the hammer when the trap is charged; (4) a sensitive catch which releases when slight pressure is applied; and (5) a metal bar which holds the hammer back when the trap is charged and connects to the catch. There are also assorted staples and screws to hold the system together.

Figure 1. A household mousetrap. The working parts of the trap are labeled. If any of the parts are missing the trap does not function.

If any one of the components of the mousetrap (the base, hammer, spring, catch, or holding bar) is removed, then the trap does not function. In other words, the simple little mousetrap has no ability to trap a mouse until several separate parts are all assembled.

Because the mousetrap is necessarily composed of several parts, it is irreducibly complex. Thus, irreducibly complex systems exist.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Astreja on October 23, 2013, 12:26:20 PM
Dr. T., you might want to read through the judgment from the Dover trial sometime:

Quote
"We therefore find that Professor Behe's claim for irreducible complexity has been refuted in peer-reviewed research papers and has been rejected by the scientific community at large." Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, page 79 (http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Kitzmiller_v._Dover_Area_School_District/4:Whether_ID_Is_Science#Page_79_of_139).
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 23, 2013, 12:26:25 PM
Are you really that slanted and gullible so as to bring up these arguments without ever having done even a BASIC Google search for those in the scientific community who have answered Behe??? I agree with others here who have stated that it doesn't seem you are really that interested in truth (as catering to your own biases seems to trump a humble and disinterested investigation into facts and sound reasoning).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W96AJ0ChboU (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W96AJ0ChboU)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 23, 2013, 12:30:14 PM
People created "God", they'd know its power. "God" sure as hell doesn't know. And the only one I see here who's primitive, is you, and those in accordance of you.

-Nam

lol, well your pretentious comment is somewhat amusing given you have an animated devil with a pitchfork as your avatar.  One might argue that primitive ideas appeal to you.

For one who likes to laugh a lot, you don't seem to get humor. Also, I've been called many things in my life "pretentious" has never been one of them; that seems more your cup of tea.

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Zankuu on October 23, 2013, 12:33:11 PM
If we remove one part from an irreducibly complex system,  it will not work.
Give one example of an irreducibly complex system.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 12:35:49 PM
Dr. T., you might want to read through the judgment from the Dover trial sometime:

Quote
"We therefore find that Professor Behe's claim for irreducible complexity has been refuted in peer-reviewed research papers and has been rejected by the scientific community at large." Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, page 79 (http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Kitzmiller_v._Dover_Area_School_District/4:Whether_ID_Is_Science#Page_79_of_139).

Ok, that reflects poorly on them.  You are basically saying consensus decides science but the history of the world shows consensus amongst scientists does not mean the science is  always valid and sometimes that "science" is later proven wrong by somebody, a hero if you will, like Behe, who is going against consensus.

Do you deny a moustrap, which is a relatively simply mechanism, is irreducibly complex?   If you take away one of the parts, does it still function as a mousetrap?    Do any of the individual parts have any functionality other than that of a paper weight or something not related to the function of catching mice?  So there is no gradual change, it is a step change, from a collection of parts to a system that does something. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 23, 2013, 12:36:53 PM
A mousetrap is not irreducibly complex!!!!! WATCH THE VIDEO!!!


Get honest and start reading both sides dude. You are practicing confirmation bias.
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/behe.html (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/behe.html)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 12:37:10 PM
People created "God", they'd know its power. "God" sure as hell doesn't know. And the only one I see here who's primitive, is you, and those in accordance of you.

-Nam

lol, well your pretentious comment is somewhat amusing given you have an animated devil with a pitchfork as your avatar.  One might argue that primitive ideas appeal to you.

For one who likes to laugh a lot, you don't seem to get humor. Also, I've been called many things in my life "pretentious" has never been one of them; that seems more your cup of tea.

-Nam

lol, i get your sense of humor but you called me primitive when one could argue that your sense of humor is somewhat "low brow".   

You have now accused me of both pretentiousness and being primitive which are essentially mutually exclusive. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 23, 2013, 12:39:28 PM
Are you really that slanted and gullible so as to bring up these arguments without ever having done even a BASIC Google search for those in the scientific community who have answered Behe???
So far he hasn't even demonstrated the ability to click on a link, given his failure to address what's on the other end of any of the dozens posted here for his enlightenment. I'm beginning to think a simple search on anything he's mentioned at all is beyond his abilities at this point in his cognitive development.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 23, 2013, 12:43:38 PM
People created "God", they'd know its power. "God" sure as hell doesn't know. And the only one I see here who's primitive, is you, and those in accordance of you.

-Nam

lol, well your pretentious comment is somewhat amusing given you have an animated devil with a pitchfork as your avatar.  One might argue that primitive ideas appeal to you.

For one who likes to laugh a lot, you don't seem to get humor. Also, I've been called many things in my life "pretentious" has never been one of them; that seems more your cup of tea.

-Nam

lol, i get your sense of humor but you called me primitive when one could argue that your sense of humor is somewhat "low brow".   

You have now accused me of both pretentiousness and being primitive which are essentially mutually exclusive. 

Primitive: not developed
Pretentious: attempting to impress above their actuality

Yep, that's you.

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 12:44:19 PM
A mousetrap is not irreducibly complex!!!!! WATCH THE VIDEO!!!


Get honest and start reading both sides dude. You are practicing confirmation bias.
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/behe.html (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/behe.html)

Why don't you explain it, in your own words.  Just paraphrase what the video or other people have said in response to Behe.    Just because they responded doesn't mean they were right, and Behe has responded to their responses and you act like he was silenced by their responses.  Have you looked at Behe's reponses?  He has them on the Discovery Institute website and I've seen them other places on the internet as well.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 23, 2013, 12:46:52 PM
You expect us to click your links but you won't click any of ours? This shows to me you're just here to preach. Not debate. Not learn. Preach.

Preaching isn't allowed here.

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 23, 2013, 12:49:57 PM
People created "God", they'd know its power. "God" sure as hell doesn't know. And the only one I see here who's primitive, is you, and those in accordance of you.

-Nam

lol, well your pretentious comment is somewhat amusing given you have an animated devil with a pitchfork as your avatar.  One might argue that primitive ideas appeal to you.

For one who likes to laugh a lot, you don't seem to get humor. Also, I've been called many things in my life "pretentious" has never been one of them; that seems more your cup of tea.

-Nam

lol, i get your sense of humor but you called me primitive when one could argue that your sense of humor is somewhat "low brow".   

You have now accused me of both pretentiousness and being primitive which are essentially mutually exclusive.

Still can't figure out that search thing huh?

pre·ten·tious
adjective \pri-?ten(t)-sh?s\

: having or showing the unpleasant quality of people who want to be regarded as more impressive, successful, or important than they really are
1
:  characterized by pretension: as
a :  making usually unjustified or excessive claims (as of value or standing) <the pretentious fraud who assumes a love of culture that is alien to him — Richard Watts>
b :  expressive of affected, unwarranted, or exaggerated importance, worth, or stature <pretentious language> <pretentious houses>
2
:  making demands on one's skill, ability, or means :  ambitious <the pretentious daring of the Green Mountain Boys in crossing the lake — American Guide Series: Vermont>

And for primitive we have the following:
prim·i·tive
adjective \?pri-m?-tiv\

: of, belonging to, or seeming to come from an early time in the very ancient past

: not having a written language, advanced technology, etc.

: very simple and basic : made or done in a way that is not modern and that does not show much skill
1
a :  not derived :  original, primary
b :  assumed as a basis; especially :  axiomatic <primitive concepts>
2
a :  of or relating to the earliest age or period :  primeval <the primitive church>
b :  closely approximating an early ancestral type :  little evolved <primitive mammals>
c :  belonging to or characteristic of an early stage of development :  crude, rudimentary <primitive technology>
d :  of, relating to, or constituting the assumed parent speech of related languages <primitive Germanic>
3
a :  elemental, natural <our primitive feelings of vengeance — John Mackwood>
b :  of, relating to, or produced by a people or culture that is nonindustrial and often nonliterate and tribal <primitive art>
c :  naive
d (1) :  self-taught, untutored <primitive craftsmen> (2) :  produced by a self-taught artist <a primitive painting>

No conflict whatsoever. Mutually exclusive? Only if you can't use a dictionary or grasp English. It actually seems like he described you quite accurately with those two terms.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 12:51:20 PM
You expect us to click your links is but you won't click any of ours? This shows to me you're just here to preach. Not debate. Not learn. Preach.

Preaching isn't allowed here.

-Nam

Let's try to avoid these rhetorical skirmishes although I excel in rhetoric.

Ok, let me try it this way.

Do you deny that a mousetrap is an irreducibly complex system, ie without one of its parts, it does not function like a mousetrap.   

Do you deny that a mousetrap is a relatively simple mechanism.

Do you deny that many systems/organs in the body are at least as complicated as a mousetrap? 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 23, 2013, 12:57:35 PM
If I may...

Let's try to avoid these rhetorical skirmishes although I excel in rhetoric.

Ok, let me try it this way.

Do you deny that a mousetrap is an irreducibly complex system, ie without one of its parts, it does not function like a mousetrap.

Firstly, pride comes before a fall. Boasting of one's rhetorical skills does no-one any credit.

Secondly, there are several problems with the mousetrap analogy.

One, it's a human artifact; two, it's not self-replicating; three, as it happens, it is potentially reducible (http://udel.edu/~mcdonald/mousetrap.html).

Quote
Do you deny that many systems/organs in the body are at least as complicated as a mousetrap?

Saying "it's complicated" is nowhere near enough to say that something is irreducibly so. Absent some establishment of that, all you appear to have in asserting it is an argument from ignorance: "It looks horrendously complicated to me, I don't understand how it could have arisen through natural processes, so even though I'm not an expert in biology, biochemistry, molecular biology, anatomy, paleontology or organic chemistry, I'm going to declare that it can't have arisen through natural processes."

That kind of argument is not a reasonable one.

Thirdly, why are you still trying to peddle this IC nonsense? What do you hope to achieve?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 23, 2013, 12:58:35 PM
A mousetrap is not irreducibly complex!!!!! WATCH THE VIDEO!!!


Get honest and start reading both sides dude. You are practicing confirmation bias.
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/behe.html (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/behe.html)

Why don't you explain it, in your own words.  Just paraphrase what the video or other people have said in response to Behe.    Just because they responded doesn't mean they were right, and Behe has responded to their responses and you act like he was silenced by their responses.  Have you looked at Behe's reponses?  He has them on the Discovery Institute website and I've seen them other places on the internet as well.

You continually post external links on this site, and post external material (which we have no problem viewing, reading, or responding to). Yet you refuse to read or watch anyone else's references here. That is fucking hypocrisy. I should smite you for it but I won't b/c I'm not that petty. Look inside yourself dude. View your own bias.

-The mousetrap's base can be removed and placed on the floor
-It's latch can be removed and it can be used for a different purpose (just like in living organisms as Ken Miller noted already)

Additionally, mousetraps are not self-replicating (like cells are) and thus the analogy fails. You aren't comparing apples to apples. Yet precursor structures which have additional support systems (like the bridge in the video) which are no longer needed display that precursors to IC systems (even if true) do not have to lack parts. They can have extra parts that are later removed,  unused, or unneeded.

p.s. - I doesn't matter if the mousetrap doesn't function as a mousetrap with all parts! For you to say that shows that you have completely missed the point of the rebuttal. Your IC thesis is completely destroyed by the rebuttal. If biological systems can function as other things prior then IC is false.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 23, 2013, 12:58:59 PM
You expect us to click your links is but you won't click any of ours? This shows to me you're just here to preach. Not debate. Not learn. Preach.

Preaching isn't allowed here.

-Nam

Let's try to avoid these rhetorical skirmishes although I excel in rhetoric.

Ok, let me try it this way.

Do you deny that a mousetrap is an irreducibly complex system, ie without one of its parts, it does not function like a mousetrap.   

Do you deny that a mousetrap is a relatively simple mechanism.

Do you deny that many systems/organs in the body are at least as complicated as a mousetrap? 

Yes, you do indeed "excel in rhetoric". You got me there.

Let's do an experiment: I'll build a life-sized mousetrap, and you be the mouse.

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 23, 2013, 01:01:18 PM
A mousetrap is not irreducibly complex!!!!! WATCH THE VIDEO!!!


Get honest and start reading both sides dude. You are practicing confirmation bias.
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/behe.html (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/behe.html)

Why don't you explain it, in your own words.  Just paraphrase what the video or other people have said in response to Behe.    Just because they responded doesn't mean they were right, and Behe has responded to their responses and you act like he was silenced by their responses.  Have you looked at Behe's reponses?  He has them on the Discovery Institute website and I've seen them other places on the internet as well.


You continually post external links on this site, and post external material (which we have no problem viewing, reading, or responding to). Yet you refuse to read or watch anyone else's references here. That is fucking hypocrisy. I should smite you for it but I won't b/c I'm not that petty. Look inside yourself dude. View your own bias.


-The mousetrap's base can be removed and placed on the floor
-It's latch can be removed and it can be used for a different purpose (just like in living organisms as Ken Miller noted already)


Additionally, mousetraps are not self-replicating (like cells are) and thus the analogy fails. You aren't comparing apples to apples. Yet precursor structures with have additional support systems (like in the video) which are no longer needed display that precursors to IC systems (even if true) do not have to lack parts. They can have extra parts that are later removed,  unused, or unneeded.

I already smited him for it.

:)

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: screwtape on October 23, 2013, 01:02:48 PM
I'm pretty sure humans need more energy...

You have no idea of what animals or humans require in terms of energy, so you didn't bother to look it up.  Congratulations on being ignorant, lazy and unimaginitive.  I presume you are also a republican?


Also, isn't the food chain  beneficial in comprenhensive way , although not so much for the ones who are consumed.

This was my point in the first place.  Congratulations.  You have fumbled onto the very point you have been trying to prove wrong.


More rhetoric,  possibly meant to obscure my logical posts in addition to my information defending Behe's reputation.

No, that's not rhetoric.  That is an assessment of you.  Also, your posts have no connection to logic.  This is not a slam.  You make claims, but you do not use logic.  Sorry, you just don't.

lol just means "laugh out loud".   It is common internet jargon.  You must be a novice on the internet.   Does laughing offend you?

I know what it means.  Just because I do not like it does not mean I am ignorant of its meaning.  No, I am not a novice.   

Laughing does not offend me.  Using "lol" in adult conversations does. 

You don't think that a biblical and theoretical God who designed/created lifeforms is  powerful enough...

Stop right there.  It is not a matter of what I think about this god.  I'm not the one who called it "omnipotent".  That was done by religious people long before I was born.  It has been done for about 2000 years.  So that was not me.  All I did, which clearly escaped you, was extrapolate what omnipotence meant. 

But yes, I can see that a being need not be omnipotent to create life. But then, it would also not necessarily be a god.  You would have to take that argument up with religious people.

My point is ...

Your point is wrong.  Completely and thoroughly.  I am not doing what you say I am doing.  It is the religious who say god is x, y, z.  I am saying x, y, z has certain repurcussions they have overlooked or ignored.   

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 01:08:13 PM
If I may...


One, it's a human artifact; two, it's not self-replicating; three, as it happens, it is potentially reducible (http://udel.edu/~mcdonald/mousetrap.html). 

Ok, but an irreducibly complex system can apply to both human artifacts and biological systems.  The defintion is that if you remove a part to the system, then the system becomes non-functional.   This has noting to do with is it biological or non-biological.  We are just talking about functionality of a system.

What do you mean by self replicating?

It can't be potentially reducible.   You cannot argue a mousetrap can work if you remove the parts, and the individual parts have no function outside of something unrelated to catching mice,  like a paper weight or a toothpick.


Quote
Saying "it's complicated" is nowhere near enough to say that something is irreducibly so.   

That's true, I've made that clear in prior posts but I just have asked it this way:

Do you deny that there are no systems in the body that are not irreducibly complex given a simple mechanism like a mousetrap is irreducibly complex?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 23, 2013, 01:10:34 PM
Let's try to avoid these rhetorical skirmishes although I excel in rhetoric.
I'm not worried about your prowess at rhetoric at this point.  And you really should take the time to look at the evidence that other people provide, rather than continuing to try to blow it off.  Well, unless you don't mind being exposed as an ignorant hypocrite, anyway.

Quote from: DrTesla
Ok, let me try it this way.

Do you deny that a mousetrap is an irreducibly complex system, ie without one of its parts, it does not function like a mousetrap.
Yes, in fact, I do - you do not need the wooden base of a mousetrap in order for it to function as a mousetrap.  Not only that, but you can use the individual components of a mousetrap in other ways (which would be represented in evolution as precursors to a more complex organ being used in other areas by an organism).  The point being that this "irreducibly complex" argument that you're so fond of just simply does not apply to reality when it comes to biology.

Quote from: DrTesla
Do you deny that a mousetrap is a relatively simple mechanism.
Of course not, it is a relatively simple mechanism.

Quote from: DrTesla
Do you deny that many systems/organs in the body are at least as complicated as a mousetrap?
Of course not, but this is irrelevant.  Stop using complexity as an excuse to claim that evolution is impossible.  It's long since gotten old to hear you repeat the same arguments over and over again, while you blithely ignore anything that anyone presents that contradicts those arguments.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jdawg70 on October 23, 2013, 01:11:43 PM
since any precursor to an irreducibly complex system is by definition nonfunctional.
Nonfunctional as a mousetrap maybe, but hardly non-functional period.  Behe's analogy fails because it predetermines a highly specific function to evaluate success or failure against.  Let's consider his humble mousetrap.

There are:
(1) a flat wooden platform
(2) a metal hammer
(3) a wire spring
(4) a sensitive catch
(5) a metal bar

And each of those piece would certainly make for a poor mousetrap, or, as Behe would put it, a non-functional mousetrap.  But what if you started with needing to just get start congregating mice to a specific location?  You have a mouse infestation, but for purposes of the party you're throwing tonight, you really just need to make sure that there are fewer mice running around your living room in random directions.  A wooden platform would serve as an adequate landing point to put bait, say, cheese, without messing up the carpet.  So you put a wooden platform with a few hunks of cheese in another room, in hopes that the mice will have a greater tendency to hang out in the room with cheese so that your guests don't see so many of them bumming around the living room.

The night of the party...

Success!!!  There were only, like, 20 mice running around the living room as opposed to the normal 50 or so that typically happen.  But, as it happens, some people are still turned off by the presence of mice, and you've noticed that attendance to your shindig is still steadily going down.  Well, hell, in order to keep people coming to the party, perhaps you should do something to not just lure mice away but to keep them away.  So an easy solution is, when the mice are congregating around the wooden platform with the cheese, you just kill them.  Those bastards aren't going to be bugging people in the living room after that!  So you grab a metal hammer and put it in the room so that, when you're in there, you can kill the little buggers without messing up your shoes.

And that works, but you're kinda tired of the whole polling process of having to periodically pop into the room and see if there were any mice to kill.  A-ha!  You'll just put a little sensitive trigger there that will make a noise whenever a mouse grabs himself some cheese.  That way, you'll know when you need to pop into the room to kill some mice.  Easy-peasy.

Unfortunately, while a few weeks of this has improved party attendance, you realize that if attendance doesn't significantly improve anytime soon you're going to have to cancel these parties.  The mice numbers are down, but it's apparently not enough.  You've got to seriously reduce these mice numbers so that they just plain don't show up at the party.  But, you just don't have enough time to go mouse killin'.  Besides, it's not like you're home 24 hours a day and always within earshot of the room.  You need a way to have this wooden platform kill the little buggers for you, so you don't have to be such an active participant.

So you start experimenting, trying out a few things here and there.  Maybe you can give the mice a heart attack or something by scaring them with a really loud noise!  You attach a spring to your sensitive trigger to make a much louder "Thwap!" sound.  You try this for a few weeks, but the mice population hasn't really been positively or negatively affected by it (upon observation, you notice that the mice just don't pay any attention to the noise).  Well, that little spring isn't really reducing the efficacy of your device, and you're sorta lazy so you don't bother to get rid of it.

Then, one day, quite by accident, you leave your hammer on the end of the spring.  Providence has shined down upon you!  Much to your amazement, you witness a greedy mouse eat some cheese and "Bam!" the catch triggers, the spring disengages, taking the hammer with it and smacking the mouse on the head!  Of course, your repeatability of this result is...lacking, to say the least.  About 99% of the time the spring just goes "Thwap!" without taking the hammer with it.  So you attach a string to the spring and hammer via hooks so that the hammer goes with it every time.

98.5% failure rate.  That sucks.  The hammer just lands at random locations, occasionally making contact with the head of a mouse.  You fiddle around with string length, attaching strings to random locations on the wooden platform, spring, and hammer until the hammer lands roughly in the same place every time, i.e. the vicinity of a mouse's head.  Ah...success.  And then you notice that, with all of the hook placements you've put on that wooden platform, you now have a pretty easy place to put a metal bar for the hammer to rest against that is in close enough proximity to the spring to allow for direct coupling!  You slap a metal bar on there, get rid of the strings, and now you're good to go!

...

So, my little storytelling exercise is not without fault, and many, many aspects of that can be picked at, or possibly refined to better match with an actual reality.  But I think I've shown the idea that an irreducibly complex system like a mouse trap cannot be created through small, iterative, successive implementation is simply false.  Maybe some of those intermediate steps couldn't be considered a mouse trap (e.g. wooden platform with a hunk of cheese on it), and so some of those intermediate steps could be considered as non-functional as a mousetrap, but hardly non-functional, period.

I didn't even have to talk about scaffolding.

P.S. Holy crap-in-a-hat, 18 new replies while I was typing this one out.  I spent way too much time typing this drivel not to hit 'Post', but now I'm afraid that bunches of what I typed are just invalid or redundant.  Apologies all around.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 23, 2013, 01:13:10 PM
Jaime,

My comment was much better. He can understand it. Yours, I'm afraid it'll blow by him.

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 23, 2013, 01:23:13 PM
What do you mean by self replicating?

lol  &)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 23, 2013, 01:23:21 PM
Do you deny that there are no systems in the body that are not irreducibly complex given a simple mechanism like a mousetrap is irreducibly complex?
Are you seriously trying to show your ignorance off?  Because I have a hard time believing that you could do so by accident.  Deus gave an example of how the mousetrap is not irreducibly complex.  It's obvious you didn't even bother to look at the link he provided, because you're repeating the same tiresome, rebutted argument again.

All you're accomplishing by now is to make people think worse and worse of you, and by extension the things you're expounding on.  Even if intelligent design and irreducible complexity were actually valid, your efforts would put them in such a negative light that you'd make your own job much harder than it needed to be.  And since they've not been validated, you're making them look ridiculous to boot.

For your own sake, you should really stop and reevaluate what you're actually accomplishing here, and how ineffective your arguments really are.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 01:30:21 PM
So, my little storytelling exercise is not without fault, and many, many aspects of that can be picked at, or possibly refined to better match with an actual reality.  But I think I've shown the idea that an irreducibly complex system like a mouse trap cannot be created through small, iterative, successive implementation is simply false.  Maybe some of those intermediate steps couldn't be considered a mouse trap (e.g. wooden platform with a hunk of cheese on it), and so some of those intermediate steps could be considered as non-functional as a mousetrap, but hardly non-functional, period.


Holy wall of text.  That hurt my eyes.

I appreciate your analogy but your analogy actually describes intelligent design.  You have a 3rd party to a process planning improvements (you even use the word experimenting) and thus bringing about gradual change and a more complex approach.   

In Darwin evolution theory,  there is no 3rd party planner who observes that something can be improved.    Therefore,  a function needs to be selected, and in this case it needs to be something deriative of catching a mouse.  And then as this function is beneficial for survival,  it is selected by natural selection and over time beneficial random mutations of this basic function  via the evolution process leads to a higher complex part    But we see with the mouse trap example there is no functionality of the parts by themselves, nor is there functionality with a few of them combined.    All parts have to be there and assembled in a specific way for it to work.   
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 01:34:40 PM
It is self evident that cells are self replicating, otherwise Darwin evolution could not occur.   Even if there is an intelligent designer, there is still cellular replication,  so that is irrelevant to the issue of irreducible complexity. 

Self replication doesn't explain how a natural process of gradual change can lead to a system that does not work if even 1 part is removed and the parts themselves are non-functional in terms of the goal   function of the system of which it is apart.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 23, 2013, 01:38:31 PM
DrTesla, are you also a proponent of ID? If so, why?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Zankuu on October 23, 2013, 01:38:52 PM
Tesla, I'm still waiting for an example of an irreducibly complex biological structure. I see we're talking about the concept, the idea- but I'd appreciate an actual example of this type of biological structure.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Dante on October 23, 2013, 01:40:52 PM
DrTesla,

I, for one, want to thank you for posting in this thread, and for attempting to give everyone your evidence that the ToE is false. I really, really appreciate your participation.

Now, any fencesitters/lurkers with an open mind to the truth of the matter can read about it here, and see quite clearly, to anyone with a rational, intelligent mind, that the IC is easily blown out of the water as a scientific hypothesis.

Evolution works, and requires no gods.

Thanks again!
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 01:41:13 PM
Tesla, I'm still waiting for an example of an irreducibly complex biological structure. I see we're talking about the concept, the idea- but I'd appreciate an actual example of this type of biological structure.

Do you reject the bacterial flaggellum,  the eye, and blood clotting cascade examples usually given?   

If so, why?   Do they work if one part is missing?  I'm not talking about the part being there but damaged or just old age.    Does a partial eye allow vision?   
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jdawg70 on October 23, 2013, 01:43:53 PM
So, my little storytelling exercise is not without fault, and many, many aspects of that can be picked at, or possibly refined to better match with an actual reality.  But I think I've shown the idea that an irreducibly complex system like a mouse trap cannot be created through small, iterative, successive implementation is simply false.  Maybe some of those intermediate steps couldn't be considered a mouse trap (e.g. wooden platform with a hunk of cheese on it), and so some of those intermediate steps could be considered as non-functional as a mousetrap, but hardly non-functional, period.


Holy wall of text.  That hurt my eyes.

I appreciate your analogy but your analogy actually describes intelligent design.  You have a 3rd party to a process planning improvements (you even use the word experimenting) and thus bringing about gradual change and a more complex approach.   

In Darwin evolution theory,  there is no 3rd party planner who observes that something can be improved.    Therefore,  a function needs to be selected, and in this case it needs to be something deriative of catching a mouse.  And then as this function is beneficial for survival,  it is selected by natural selection and over time beneficial random mutations of this basic function  via the evolution process leads to a higher complex part    But we see with the mouse trap example there is no functionality of the parts by themselves, nor is there functionality with a few of them combined.    All parts have to be there and assembled in a specific way for it to work.
You didn't actually read my wall of text[1], did you?
 1. Wall-of-text that had logical paragraph separation, complete with added whitespace.  If this hurts your eyes I challenge you to read a book.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 23, 2013, 01:47:06 PM
I think we've just discovered a prime specimen of Irreducible Stupidity! :blank:
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 23, 2013, 01:52:00 PM
Do you reject ... <snip>  ... If so, why? 
Go back and read the responses already given, and the links provided.

Do they work if one part is missing? 
They are an end-product of a process of evolution which includes processes such duplication, redundancy, acquisition, and even DELETION.

Stop being such a nong!
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 01:52:55 PM
So, my little storytelling exercise is not without fault, and many, many aspects of that can be picked at, or possibly refined to better match with an actual reality.  But I think I've shown the idea that an irreducibly complex system like a mouse trap cannot be created through small, iterative, successive implementation is simply false.  Maybe some of those intermediate steps couldn't be considered a mouse trap (e.g. wooden platform with a hunk of cheese on it), and so some of those intermediate steps could be considered as non-functional as a mousetrap, but hardly non-functional, period.


Holy wall of text.  That hurt my eyes.

I appreciate your analogy but your analogy actually describes intelligent design.  You have a 3rd party to a process planning improvements (you even use the word experimenting) and thus bringing about gradual change and a more complex approach.   

In Darwin evolution theory,  there is no 3rd party planner who observes that something can be improved.    Therefore,  a function needs to be selected, and in this case it needs to be something deriative of catching a mouse.  And then as this function is beneficial for survival,  it is selected by natural selection and over time beneficial random mutations of this basic function  via the evolution process leads to a higher complex part    But we see with the mouse trap example there is no functionality of the parts by themselves, nor is there functionality with a few of them combined.    All parts have to be there and assembled in a specific way for it to work.
You didn't actually read my wall of text[1], did you?
 1. Wall-of-text that had logical paragraph separation, complete with added whitespace.  If this hurts your eyes I challenge you to read a book.

ok, well you are missing the point, that the parts of a irreducibly complex system are by definition non-functional  in terms of having a useful function related to the overall function of the system, like catching mice.   They may function as a paper weight or something, but something benign like that would not be "selected" via natural selection.   

You are basically admitting that a direct evolution of function is not possible but that a non-direct evolutionary path might exist.   Behe says in his book that indirect evolution is possible but improbable.   We are getting somewhere if you concede Behe won the argument on direction evolution.   I will post more on indirect evolution and why this improbable shortly. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 23, 2013, 01:58:09 PM
Holy wall of text.  That hurt my eyes.

I appreciate your analogy but your analogy actually describes intelligent design.  You have a 3rd party to a process planning improvements (you even use the word experimenting) and thus bringing about gradual change and a more complex approach.
How convenient.  Someone provides an example of how a mousetrap is absolutely not irreducibly complex...and you claim that it's actually an example of intelligent design (this is moving the goalposts, which is against the forum rules).  Which misses the point entirely.  Haven't you said repeatedly that you don't understand how something can gradually change over time to be more and more efficient?  Yet this is just such an example.  Sure, in this case, it was a person who was providing the gradual changes, but the point is that you can have incremental improvements of a supposedly "irreducible" system.  Which destroys the entire "irreducible" argument.

Now that you've been shown that a supposedly "irreducible" system or structure can, in fact, be reduced and still be fully functional, all that remains is to show that it can happen by natural processes.  Which is downright easy.  All it takes is showing that a species can evolve something beneficial and then later on modify the beneficial trait somehow.  Which, in fact, has been shown repeatedly. 

Quote from: DrTesla
In Darwin evolution theory,  there is no 3rd party planner who observes that something can be improved.    Therefore,  a function needs to be selected, and in this case it needs to be something deriative of catching a mouse.  And then as this function is beneficial for survival,  it is selected by natural selection and over time beneficial random mutations of this basic function  via the evolution process leads to a higher complex part    But we see with the mouse trap example there is no functionality of the parts by themselves, nor is there functionality with a few of them combined.    All parts have to be there and assembled in a specific way for it to work.
Wrong.  As jdawg showed, there is nothing at all saying that they have to be assembled in a specific way in order for it to function, or that they all have to be there at the same time.  The individual parts have their own functionality, and don't require the other parts to be present in order to function.  The cheese would be bait for the mice regardless of whether or not any components of the trap were present, for example.  The wooden base of the trap doesn't need to be present either; the floor (part of the environment) can substitute instead.  The hammer could simply be held, or placed next to a wall so that vibrations in the wall (such as by a mouse going through its hole) would dislodge it.  The catch could simply be very noisy, or possibly injurious.  The spring could be shaped differently and act like a noose.  And the bar could be used as something to scare or hurt the mice as well, similar to the catch.

The point is, it is absolutely not irreducible.  Not one of the parts of the trap requires any other part to be present in order to function (however ineffectively) to trap, hurt, or kill mice.  And there is no requirement that they be all put together at the same time, or that they be put together in that specific configuration, or that other parts couldn't be added, or that they couldn't be modified somehow.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Zankuu on October 23, 2013, 01:58:54 PM
Do you reject the bacterial flaggellum [...]
Yeah, it's been explained.

[...] the eye, [...]
What are you calling an eye? That may seem like a silly question but there are ancient organisms that had (and have) flat photoreceptive "eyes" which could sense light, but not the direction of the light. Then there are slightly more complex organisms (which show up around the Cambrian era) that had (and have) cupped or rounded "eyes" and can sense which direction the light is being emitted from. You can pretty much track the evolution of aquatic eye. So what is it about the eye that impresses you so much? The development of photoreceptive cells isn't unknown territory. We know how they developed (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Photoreceptor_cell#Development).

and blood clotting cascade examples usually given?
I'm unaware of this argument. Do you have a link?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 23, 2013, 01:59:23 PM
Tesla, I'm still waiting for an example of an irreducibly complex biological structure. I see we're talking about the concept, the idea- but I'd appreciate an actual example of this type of biological structure.

Do you reject the bacterial flaggellum,  the eye, and blood clotting cascade examples usually given?   

If so, why?   Do they work if one part is missing?  I'm not talking about the part being there but damaged or just old age.    Does a partial eye allow vision?   

This shows that you do not read other people's posts.

You do such a wonderful job of showing your ignorance and intellectual dishonesty. Any reader can see from your posts the personification of pseudo science. You can turn more people away from irreducible complexity than the rest of us together. I hope you stay here until everyone is sick of your nonsense.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: median on October 23, 2013, 02:23:33 PM
Tesla, I'm still waiting for an example of an irreducibly complex biological structure. I see we're talking about the concept, the idea- but I'd appreciate an actual example of this type of biological structure.

Do you reject the bacterial flaggellum,  the eye, and blood clotting cascade examples usually given?   

If so, why?   Do they work if one part is missing?  I'm not talking about the part being there but damaged or just old age.    Does a partial eye allow vision?   

They can work as something else and that is exactly the point you keep missing. It is irrelevant whether a flagellum doesn't work as a flagellum if you remove specific parts. Functioning "as" and functioning "period" are two entirely different things. You are moving the goal-post. Once again, you should get a smite for this.  For the sake of argument, though, we could grant IC and this still gets your argument nowhere b/c IC does not exclude gradual evolutionary change.

Quote

Behe's flawed argument

Behe claims that irreducibly complex systems cannot be produced directly by gradual evolution. But why not? Behe's reckoning goes like this:

(P1) Direct, gradual evolution proceeds only by stepwise addition of parts.
(P2) By definition, an irreducibly complex system lacking a part is nonfunctional.
(C) Therefore, all possible direct gradual evolutionary precursors to an irreducibly complex system must be nonfunctional.

Of course, Behe's argument is invalid since the first premise is false: gradual evolution can do much more than just add parts. For instance, evolution can also change or remove parts (pretty simple, eh?). In contrast, Behe's irreducible complexity is restricted to only reversing the addition of parts. This is why irreducible complexity cannot tell us anything useful about how a structure did or did not evolve.


http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB200_1.html (http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB200_1.html)
http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB200.html (http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB200.html)
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/ICsilly.html (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/ICsilly.html)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Astreja on October 23, 2013, 02:26:47 PM
Do you deny a mousetrap, which is a relatively simple mechanism, is irreducibly complex?   If you take away one of the parts, does it still function as a mousetrap?

I can think of several mouse-unfriendly uses for the individual parts.  I could asphyxiate mice by collecting the little wooden boards and setting fire to them at the front door of the nest; I could drop a bucketful of metal bits and pieces on a mouse; or I could just plain hit the mouse with the base.

I could also use the parts for other things -- Paint tarot cards on mousetrap bases, or make paperclips out of the springs.  There isn't a 1:1 correlation between the parts and the whole.  So it is with evolution:  A species often diverges from its ancestral line when it finds a novel use for something in its environment.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 23, 2013, 02:27:10 PM
.. and blood clotting cascade examples usually given?

A few minutes of google (but with an open mind and some training to know what to look for) reveals this:

Quote
The evolution of vertebrate blood coagulation as viewed from a comparison of puffer fish and sea squirt genomes

The blood coagulation scheme for the puffer fish, Fugu rubripes, has been reconstructed on the basis of orthologs of genes for mammalian blood clotting factors being present in its genome. As expected, clotting follows the same fundamental pattern as has been observed in other vertebrates, even though genes for some clotting factors found in mammals are absent and some others are present in more than one gene copy. All told, 26 different proteins involved in clotting or fibrinolysis were searched against the puffer fish genome. Of these, orthologs were found for 21. Genes for the ``contact system'' factors (factor XI, factor XII, and prekallikrein) could not be identified. On the other hand, two genes were found for factor IX and four for factor VII. It was evident that not all four factor VII genes are functional, essential active-site residues having been replaced in two of them. A search of the genome of a urochordate, the sea squirt, Ciona intestinalis, did not turn up any genuine orthologs for these 26 factors, although paralogs and/or constituent domains were evident for virtually all of them.
http://www.pnas.org/content/100/13/7527.full

Notice how evolution has jerked the system around.  In comparison there are indeed parts missing :o  Other parts added :o  And a bunch of gene duplications and redundancy :o

Already with one little bit of research done by genuine scientists (unlike Behe) we can see evidence of the process by which complex sytems change and evolve.

More excitement to follow  ;)
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 23, 2013, 02:33:00 PM

Things can be complex but not irreducibly complex.  In other words, they could have originated by gradual incremental change via Darwin evolution.   

 We must examine how they were built, not simply are they complex or not.

Tesla, do you understand what you have written here?

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 23, 2013, 02:58:48 PM
What we are saying is the structure needs all its parts to work.  If one part were removed, then the structure/sysem would not work.   Thus, the eye could not have developed in a piecemeal, incremental way that Darwins propose that it could via evolution.     It has to evolve directly into the complex system with all the parts there at once and arranged in a way that allows them to fullfill the function of vision, or whatever,  which would mean that it wasn't the gradual incremental change proposed by Darwins.

Who is this WE ? Are there two of you writing this rubbish or have you been instructed to come here and write it?

It does not have to evolve directly. Small animals such as an amoeba do not need complex organs. Every complex organ in your body had either a different form or simpler function in small animals.

One of the ways nature works is by changing the function of organs. An easy example is your tongue. Many animals use their tongue for tasting food. Cats also use their tongue for cleaning their fur. Humans also use their tongue for speaking.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 23, 2013, 03:03:29 PM
If you take away one layer from the stratigraphic column, all of the earth above it would collapse.  Plus, it couldn't have been inserted in there because of the rest of the rock pressing above it.

Clearly, the stratigraphic column must have been designed as-is, rather than that heretical sedimentary theory...It's irreducible!
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 23, 2013, 03:06:21 PM
Evolution of blood clotting:
Quote
No doubt about it - clotting is an essential function and it's not something to be messed with. But does this also mean that it could not have evolved? Not at all. The key to understanding the evolution of this intricate system, as Russell Doolittle has pointed out, is the fact that the clotting factors share an exquisite and revealing similarity.
http://www.millerandlevine.com/km/evol/DI/clot/Clotting.html

Important concepts in link above:
1) Existing signal molecule = cAMP finds a new use  ;)
2) Protein-cutting enzymes (unrelated to clotting) find a new use. ;)
3) Duplication of existing gene and mutations play a key role ;)
4) Accidental gene splicing gets a run = more reuse and recycling ;)
5) The basic system evolves additions ;)
6) The system evolves controls ;)

End result the godiditbrigade are denied one more "example" of irreducible complexity. 

Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 23, 2013, 03:10:43 PM
Whew, it's hard to keep up with this thread. Numerous new replies since I started writing my response to DrTesla, followed by several unexplained 403 Forbiddens. Very frustrating. Clearly there's something in the post that's messing up the form submission.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 23, 2013, 03:15:19 PM
Sorry for the multiple posts but the forum software is giving me trouble... :(

If I may...

One, it's a human artifact; two, it's not self-replicating; three, as it happens, it is potentially reducible (http://udel.edu/~mcdonald/mousetrap.html). 

Ok, but an irreducibly complex system can apply to both human artifacts and biological systems.

To claim that it can apply to biological systems would appear to be a case of assuming a specific conclusion.

Quote
The defintion is that if you remove a part to the system, then the system becomes non-functional.

I'm aware what the definition is. However, think about that you're saying here: the system becomes non-functional, period. Let's note that one down for later.

Quote
What do you mean by self replicating?

Reproductive.

Quote
It can't be potentially reducible.

You can remove one part from a mousetrap and the remainder may still perform a function, as jdawg70 notes.

Quote
You cannot argue a mousetrap can work if you remove the parts, and the individual parts have no function outside of something unrelated to catching mice,  like a paper weight or a toothpick.

Straw man. As per the definition above, "reducible" does not mean "it'll still work if you disassemble it entirely".

Quote
Quote
Saying "it's complicated" is nowhere near enough to say that something is irreducibly so.   

That's true, I've made that clear in prior posts

Ok.

Quote
but I just have asked it this way:

Do you deny that there are no systems in the body that are not irreducibly complex

Treble negative... your English teacher would be having a fit somewhere. I'm not sure if you meant to say what you said, under all that.

Let's unpack your sentence. "Not irreducibly complex" = reducible, or simple. "Do you deny that there are no" = "Do you assert that there are". So your question becomes: "do you assert that there are systems in the body that are reducible, or simple?"

No, but I'd say that not only could there by systems in the body that are either reducible or simple, but that it's possible that they all are.

So, do you assert there are systems in the body that are irreducibly complex? Given that you are not an expert, by your own admission, on what basis do you assert them?

Quote
given a simple mechanism like a mousetrap is irreducibly complex?

One is not obliged to grant that without it first being established.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 23, 2013, 03:19:41 PM
(Last one - sorry)

DrTesla - Later you say, in response to jdawg70, that:

Quote
... your analogy actually describes intelligent design. You have a 3rd party to a process planning improvements (you even use the word experimenting) and thus bringing about gradual change and a more complex approach.

The analogy concerned a mousetrap, which we know isn't subject to modifications via natural processes, so your observation is moot.

Later on, in reply to Zankuu, you ask:

Quote
Do you reject the bacterial flaggellum,  the eye, and blood clotting cascade examples usually given?

Several pages ago I offered you a seven-minute YouTube video in which Ken Miller debunks the bacterial flagellum example. I'm not sure if you ever watched it. There's a longer, two-hour video, of which the one I originally posted was an excerpt:
The collapse of Intelligent Design (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ohd5uqzlwsU)

On Miller and Levine's Website (http://www.millerandlevine.com/km/evol/design2/article.html) you'll find a pre-publication article on the matter. Two other authors wrote an article in Current Biology (http://www.cell.com/current-biology/retrieve/pii/S0960982207013383) (but which is, sadly, not open-access - curse you, Elsevier!) on the specific subject of the bacterial flagellum.

You have been provided other links concerning the notion of the irreducible complexity of the eye. Again, it's not clear from any of the past posts that you've read or watched any of the material presented to you.

And I see that William has recently posted material concerning the blood clotting cascade mechanism.

So why do you continue to assert, despite your own self-confessed lack of expertise, that these two (Sorry, three.) systems are irreducibly complex?

Later still, you say that:

Quote
It is self evident that cells are self replicating, otherwise Darwin evolution could not occur.   Even if there is an intelligent designer, there is still cellular replication,  so that is irrelevant to the issue of irreducible complexity.

Self replication doesn't explain how a natural process of gradual change can lead to a system that does not work if even 1 part is removed and the parts themselves are non-functional in terms of the goal   function of the system of which it is a part.

The ability to self-replicate is relevant to the point in the sense that in the case of non-living objects, there exists no natural process by which you could end up with improved copies of them over time.

By contrast, in the case of living things that make somewhat-inaccurate copies of themselves, in an environment whereby natural processes determine which living things are capable of reaching maturity, finding a mate and producing offspring.

On to your second paragraph: how are you defining the 'system', a 'part' and the 'goal function of the system'? These are somewhat vague terms and it's important to pin down what you mean in order to address it usefully.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 23, 2013, 03:57:41 PM
Dear DrTesla, I would like to remind you at this stage of the proceedings of the philosophical point that one only needs to conceive of a logical pathway to explain away complexity to dissolve the mystical aura of irreducible complexity.  The bubble pops. Not with a bang but a fizzle.

I almost feel your pain - to have such a cherished idea dissolve in front a bunch of rude godless bastards must be almost intolerable.

But chin up, there is a path to redemption, integrity and respect. All you have to say (and be sincere about it please) is: "Thanks, I was wrong, I've learned something."
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 23, 2013, 04:31:59 PM
The reducible  :laugh: blood clotting story gets even more awesome:

Quote
Doolittle and Feng (1987) predicted that "lower" vertebrates would lack the "contact pathway" of blood clotting. Work on the genomes of the puffer fish and zebrafish have confirmed this (Yong and Doolittle 2003).
http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CB/CB200_2.html

Heheeeeee ... a real true "prophecy" in our lifetimes added to the so-called "Darwinists" ledger   ;D
I'll have to remember this one for the next nong that comes along.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Deus ex Machina on October 23, 2013, 05:34:00 PM
{...}
Behe's flawed argument
{...}

Thank you for this. In one of my earlier drafts of my frustratingly-impossible-to-post-as-a-single-post response to DrTesla, I had added a comment that, in a somewhat hamfisted way, was groping towards the point that this model of evolutionary change that entailed that it was an inexorably bottom-up exercise, that unerringly followed only a cumulative addition of "parts", was quite far from the whole story. There is no reason why, according to the model, components cannot be modified, substituted or removed, as well as added.

In such a fashion, it is actually quite possible to envisage a scenario where, through natural processes alone, you end up with a system that qualifies as "irreducibly complex" according to Behe's (original) definition - where a system would be nonfunctional if one part were removed, but it would still be functional if you actually replayed the naturally-guided changes faithfully in reverse order to the order in which they originally took place. Given this, it becomes clear that the central premise of Behe's idea - that if we were to discover such a system in nature, it would could not possibly be the product of gradual changes via natural processes - is flawed.

So not only does IC misunderstand "design" - manufactured products are themselves often (if not always) the product of gradual changes over time, but artificially rather than naturally selected - but its premise falls flat on the simple point that it takes an extremely narrow view of the range of natural changes that can take place.

It does however mean that one route by which evolutionary Theory might be falsified, turns out to be a dead end. Cheerfully, it's not the only route by which evolutionary Theory might be falsified, so Popper isn't going to come back to haunt us just yet.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Nam on October 23, 2013, 05:47:37 PM
If you take away one layer from the stratigraphic column, all of the earth above it would collapse.  Plus, it couldn't have been inserted in there because of the rest of the rock pressing above it.

Clearly, the stratigraphic column must have been designed as-is, rather than that heretical sedimentary theory...It's irreducible!

I know who "Dr"Tesla is: Vizzini!

-Nam
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: William on October 23, 2013, 05:56:47 PM
.... There is no reason why, according to the model, components cannot be modified, substituted or removed, as well as added.

.... the simple point that it takes an extremely narrow view of the range of natural changes that can take place.

So eloquently put DeM, I'm sure even DrT can comprehend that. 

Why is it that so many people fighting with evolution have this idea that it's all about one little measly mutation at a time. And from the way they talk you'd think there's only one single copy of the genome available for the process.  No comprehension of the way genetic information has been batted around (even between species), used and abused, lost and found, hijacked etc.  No comprehension of population sizes.  No comprehension of geological time and the generations upon generations upon generations.

Instead we get basically the same fucking whine: "Where did the information come from?  Mutation isn't sufficient!"

Of course mutation alone is insufficient - but that's not nearly all there is!
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 07:05:18 PM
Regarding Ken Miller, who I think is pretty easy to discredit:

Irreducible Complexity is an Obstacle to Darwinism Even if Parts of a System have other Functions:
A Response to Sharon Begley's Wall Street Journal Column
By: Michael J. Behe
Discovery Institute
February 18, 2004

In a recent column in the Wall Street Journal (February 13, 2004, Science Journal, page B1, "Evolution Critics Come Under Fire for Flaws In 'Intelligent Design'") science writer Sharon Begley repeated some false claims about the concept of irreducible complexity (IC) that have been made by Darwinists, in particular by Kenneth Miller, a professor of biology at Brown University. After giving a serviceable description in her column of why I argue that a mousetrap is IC, Begley added the Darwinist poison pill to the concept. The key misleading assertion in the article is the following: "Moreover, the individual parts of complex structures supposedly serve no function." In other words, opponents of design want to assert that if the individual parts of a putatively IC structure can be used for anything at all other than their role in the system under consideration, then the system itself is not IC. So, for example, Kenneth Miller has seriously argued that a part of a mousetrap could be used as a paperweight, so not even a mousetrap is IC. Now, anything that has mass could be used as a paperweight. Thus by Miller's tendentious reasoning any part of any system at all has a separate "function". Presto! There is no such thing as irreducible complexity


The system can have its own function, different from any of the parts. Any individual function of a part does not explain the separate function of the system.

Miller applies his crackerjack reasoning not only to the mousetrap, but also to the bacterial flagellum—the extremely sophisticated, ultra complex biological outboard motor that bacteria use to swim, which I had discussed in Darwin's Black Box and which has becoming something of a poster child for intelligent design. No wonder, since anyone looking at a drawing of the flagellum immediately apprehends the design. Since the flagellum is such an embarrassment to the Darwinian project, Miller tries to distract attention from its manifest design by pointing out that parts of the structure can have functions other than propulsion. In particular, some parts of the flagellum act as a protein pump, allowing the flagellum to aid in its own construction—a level of complexity that was unsuspected until relatively recently.

Miller's argument is that since a subset of the proteins of the flagellum can have a function of their own, then the flagellum is not IC and Darwinian evolution could produce it. That's it! He doesn't show how natural selection could do so; he doesn't cite experiments showing that such a thing is possible; he doesn't give a theoretical model. He just points to the greater-than-expected complexity of the flagellum (which Darwinists did not predict or expect) and declares that Darwinian processes could produce it. This is clearly not a fellow who wants to look into the topic too closely.

In fact, the function of a pump has essentially nothing to do with the function of the system to act as a rotary propulsion device, anymore than the ability of parts of a mousetrap to act as paperweights has to do with the trap function. And the existence of the ability to pump proteins tells us nil about how the rotary propulsion function might come to be in a Darwinian fashion. For example, suppose that the same parts of the flagellum that were unexpectedly discovered to act as a protein pump were instead unexpectedly discovered to be, say, a chemical factory for synthesizing membrane lipids. Would that alternative discovery affect Kenneth Miller's reasoning at all? Not in the least. His reasoning would still be simply that a part of the flagellum had a separate function. But how would a lipid-making factory explain rotary propulsion? In the same way that protein pumping explains it—it doesn't explain it at all.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 23, 2013, 07:18:12 PM
Anyone is 'easy' to discredit if you're willing to be dishonest enough, DrTesla.

By the way, did you know that Behe originally insisted that clotting HAD to be irreducibly complex?  Yet he finally admitted that it isn't.  You know who pressed him to admit it?  Kenneth Miller.

So much for your assertion that Miller is easy to discredit.  Indeed, whenever Behe has been pressed sufficiently on claims that he hopes will not pass muster, he will - reluctantly - admit that he's wrong about them.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 23, 2013, 07:20:59 PM
Regarding Ken Miller, who I think is pretty easy to discredit:


When are you getting the Nobel Prize for this?

And why is this Tesla guy not down to -1000 yet for all his ignorance, dishonesty, not reading other people's posts, and expecting everyone to be impressed by his posts. After five days, -1000 is too lenient.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 07:29:58 PM
Anyone is 'easy' to discredit if you're willing to be dishonest enough, DrTesla.

By the way, did you know that Behe originally insisted that clotting HAD to be irreducibly complex?  Yet he finally admitted that it isn't.  You know who pressed him to admit it?  Kenneth Miller.

So much for your assertion that Miller is easy to discredit.  Indeed, whenever Behe has been pressed sufficiently on claims that he hopes will not pass muster, he will - reluctantly - admit that he's wrong about them.

@Jaime

I will have to research your assertion re:  blood clotting cascade

So you think Miller has a point when he suggests that a system isn't IC if the parts have a function when they are apart from the system, even if the part alone function has nothing to do with the system function?   



But if Miller's point about the mouse trap analogy  and then the bacterial flaggelum are clearly wrong and don't really even address IC,  then why should we expect he will be right about blood clotting cascade  not being irreducibly complex.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 23, 2013, 07:40:04 PM

@Jaime

I will have to research your assertion re:  blood clotting cascade


I will have to guess the answer to your "research" before you do it. After a great deal of mental effort lasting several seconds, you will decide that you don't like it.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 07:47:44 PM

@Jaime

I will have to research your assertion re:  blood clotting cascade


I will have to guess the answer to your "research" before you do it. After a great deal of mental effort lasting several seconds, you will decide that you don't like it.

Well consider this:

If you remove one part from a system, shouldn't it still function like the end state system does, just at a more primitive level?  If Darwin evolution theory is legit.   You wouldn't think it would fail immediately after 1 part is removed.   It would just be a gradual reduction in the scope of the system function as you removed each part.    Does that make sense?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 23, 2013, 07:50:05 PM
Whoever said that genetic changes result in the direct addition of parts to make something up?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jaimehlers on October 23, 2013, 07:52:41 PM
So you think Miller has a point when he suggests that a system isn't IC if the parts have a function when they are apart from the system, even if the part alone function has nothing to do with the system function?
Of course I do.  Evolution isn't about progressing towards a defined goal, like design is.  It's about an organism surviving long enough to reproduce.  Whatever enhances that ability, or at least doesn't take away from it, tends to be conserved.  And that means sometimes you get fortuitous combinations of beneficial traits that were never planned to begin with.

It's little different than rolling a twenty-sided dice and getting 20 twice in a row, except for the magnitude of the odds.

Quote from: DrTesla
But if Miller's point about the mouse trap analogy  and then the bacterial flaggelum are clearly wrong and don't really even address IC,  then why should we expect he will be right about blood clotting cascade  not being irreducibly complex.
Well, since Behe himself admitted that the blood clotting cascade was not irreducibly complex, that means he acknowledged that Miller was right about it.  And that means that Behe could easily be wrong about the bacterial flagellum.  And the mousetrap too, although since a mousetrap is constructed and doesn't evolve on its own, it's not a good analogy for biology to begin with.

If you remove one part from a system, shouldn't it still function like the end state system does, just at a more primitive level?  If Darwin evolution theory is legit.   You wouldn't think it would fail immediately after 1 part is removed.   It would just be a gradual reduction in the scope of the system function as you removed each part.    Does that make sense?
Evolution isn't about randomly removing a 'part' from an organism, though, which is why Behe's irreducible complexity argument doesn't work.  It's about finding things that enhance the ability of an organism to survive long enough to reproduce.  Sometimes that happens through adding something that gives the organism something new, sometimes that happens by removing something that isn't very efficient from the organism, and sometimes that happens through modifying an existing thing that the organism already has.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 07:56:29 PM
Whoever said that genetic changes result in the direct addition of parts to make something up?

So you are saying genetic changes can result in a packaged unit of interacting parts?  Rather than building up to that point over time  in a gradual way? 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 23, 2013, 07:58:26 PM

@Jaime

I will have to research your assertion re:  blood clotting cascade


I will have to guess the answer to your "research" before you do it. After a great deal of mental effort lasting several seconds, you will decide that you don't like it.

Well consider this:

If you remove one part from a system, shouldn't it still function like the end state system does, just at a more primitive level?  If Darwin evolution theory is legit.   You wouldn't think it would fail immediately after 1 part is removed.   It would just be a gradual reduction in the scope of the system function as you removed each part.    Does that make sense?

No, in small animals both the form and function of organs need not be the same as they evolve into large animals. Small animals do not need the same organs as large animals.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 08:01:17 PM
lol,  Jaime,  nobody is saying evolution is about losing a part.   The point is that IF a system were to lose a part,  the remaining parts ought to have some type of functionality in relation to the end state system functionality.   In a IC system,  the remaining parts would have no functionality when the 1 part is removed.  The whole system fails at once, so how could the system been produced in a gradual way if all it takes is 1 part not working for the whole thing to shut down completely.  In other words, the entire group of parts had to come together at once and be assembled in a logical way to work with each other to fulfill the function of the system. 

it seems like we continue to talk past each other. 
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 23, 2013, 08:04:27 PM
lol,  Jaime,  nobody is saying evolution is about losing a part.   The point is that when a system loses a part,  the remaining parts ought to have some type of functionality in relation to the end state system functionality.   In a IC system,  the remaining parts would have no functionality when the 1 part is removed.  The whole system fails at once, so how could the system been produced in a gradual way if all it takes is 1 part not working for the whole thing to shut down completely.  In other words, the entire group of parts had to come together at once and be assembled in a logical way to work with each other to fulfill the function of the system. 

it seems like we continue to talk past each other.

You are thinking from the present backwards. Try thinking from the past to the present or from small animal to large.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Azdgari on October 23, 2013, 08:05:09 PM
Whoever said that genetic changes result in the direct addition of parts to make something up?

So you are saying genetic changes can result in a packaged unit of interacting parts?  Rather than building up to that point over time  in a gradual way?

No.  And that's an odd response to a "who" question.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: DrTesla on October 23, 2013, 08:10:19 PM
lol,  I guess i'm going to have to give up.    It just seems like if a system would become non-functional if 1 part was not there,  then there was never any beneficial random mutation that nature could have selected to lead up to that end state.  There needs to be a beneficial function of some sort for nature to select throughout the process of Darwin evolution.  That is what Behe is getting at.    Otherwise , the entire system has to be assembled at once and obviously that sounds like intelligent design.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Foxy Freedom on October 23, 2013, 08:14:14 PM
lol,  I guess i'm going to have to give up.    It just seems like if a system would become non-functional if 1 part was not there,  then there was never any beneficial random mutation that nature could have selected to lead up to that end state.  There needs to be a beneficial function of some sort for nature to select throughout the process of Darwin evolution.  That is what Behe is getting at.    Otherwise , the entire system has to be assembled at once and obviously that sounds like intelligent design.

I think you will have to give up. The subject is too difficult for you.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Graybeard on October 23, 2013, 08:26:54 PM
If you remove one part from a system, shouldn't it still function like the end state system does, just at a more primitive level?  If Darwin evolution theory is legit.   You wouldn't think it would fail immediately after 1 part is removed.   It would just be a gradual reduction in the scope of the system function as you removed each part.    Does that make sense?

No. If I take a kitten and cut off a leg, it will still be a kitten. I can cut out parts of its brain and it will still be a kitten. Even parts of its heart and liver and it still will be. But where does God come into it?

If you are suggesting that a kitten won't live without a liver, and the liver is complex, therefore "God did it", then this is ignorance. The liver developed from a primitive organ alongside its owner. In primitive form it would do some of the same things as a liver but mutations improved it and thus the chances of survival of its owner.

"AH!" I hear you say, "Was there a creature without a liver?"
And I reply, "Yes - some are around today and their ancestors are in the fossil record."
"What about the liver!!!???!!111!"
"Meah, probably a small mutation of a few cells of the gut wall that allowed digestion of some fatty acids thus allowing the creature to make more use of its food and/or widen its buffet. Thus it became more likely to live to breed and pass on its genes. I'm not saying that happened, but it makes sense, doesn't it?"

There's nothing too complex about evolution, but there's a lot that's interesting.

Why don't you read a book...? One would be a good start.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 23, 2013, 08:34:06 PM

"Meah, probably a small mutation of a few cells of the gut wall that allowed digestion of some fatty acids thus allowing the creature to make more use of its food and/or widen its buffet. Thus it became more likely to live to breed and pass on its genes. I'm not saying that happened, but it makes sense, doesn't it?"


Sorry if this is a very ignorant question: If a creature developed this primitive liver by way of a mutation (and I confess I don't really know what that means), doesn't that suggest the creature was born without the mutation, and therefore it wouldn't be in its genes to pass on?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 23, 2013, 08:39:40 PM
Sorry if this is a very ignorant question: If a creature developed this primitive liver by way of a mutation (and I confess I don't really know what that means), doesn't that suggest the creature was born without the mutation, and therefore it wouldn't be in its genes to pass on?

*faceplanet*
Where and when exactly do you think the mutation occurs?
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: One Above All on October 23, 2013, 08:41:32 PM
DrTesla, are you also a proponent of ID? If so, why?

Still waiting for an answer to this, DrTesla. Gonna start smiting you pretty soon.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 23, 2013, 08:42:12 PM
Sorry if this is a very ignorant question: If a creature developed this primitive liver by way of a mutation (and I confess I don't really know what that means), doesn't that suggest the creature was born without the mutation, and therefore it wouldn't be in its genes to pass on?

*faceplanet*
Where and when exactly do you think the mutation occurs?

I don't know. I said that. I asked a question.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: Jag on October 23, 2013, 08:45:00 PM
Don't YOU start now mm! ;)

If you actually want to discuss evolution, please, please, please read this thread first. Just skim for links and follow a few of them (and read what's on the other end too please), so we can all be discussing the same thing before we start.

If you are interested, and only because I like you, I'll even send you some info from the biology class I'm taking this semester that will give you a good place to start. Let me know if you want it - I can PM it to you.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: magicmiles on October 23, 2013, 08:49:15 PM
Don't YOU start now mm! ;)

If you actually want to discuss evolution, please, please, please read this thread first. Just skim for links and follow a few of them (and read what's on the other end too please), so we can all be discussing the same thing before we start.

If you are interested, and only because I like you, I'll even send you some info from the biology class I'm taking this semester that will give you a good place to start. Let me know if you want it - I can PM it to you.

LOL, I don't have the time or scientific nous to get much involved. I just read things quickly and sometimes questions pop into my head, like this one. I appreciate its probably not simple enough to just answer quickly.

As it happens, my wife is ploughing through a medical laboratory degree and got the highest possible mark for biology (and every other subject actually, so far. Smart woman). So she can explain this to me sometime.

OAA - no worries.
Title: Re: The Impossibility Argument
Post by: jdawg70 on October 23, 2013, 08:52:04 PM
lol,  I guess i'm going to have to give up.    It just seems like if a system would become non-functional if 1 part was not there,  then there was never any beneficial random mutation that nature could have selected to lead up to that end state.  There needs to be a beneficial function of some sort for nature to select throughout the process of Darwin evolution.  That is what Behe is getting at.    Otherwise , the entire system has to be assembled at once and obviously that sounds like intelligent design.
I don't know if it's because you're confused and seem to think that an evolutionary process has some kind of functional design goal or something, but you're incorrect that some function needs to be of direct benefit to be involved in the process of evolution.  It simply needs to be not detrimental to survival and reproduction.  That's it.  Your lack of realization of that may be the cause of why you can't see concepts like 'scaffolding' or why you seem to be under the weird impression that a system losing one 'part' renders it completely useless in all contexts, particularly with the fact that the only context necessary for evolution is 'survival and reproduction', and that is so broad that it can be accomplished in damn near an infinite number of ways.

If a population of a species mutates light-sensitive cells, but they don't really do anything (i.e. not attached to the nervous system to allow for processing and utilizing this new sensitivity), then unless those light-sensitive cells result in a reduction in survival or reproduction, then that mutation will continue to be passed on.  At that point it's basically a useless tool in the toolbox of surviving and reproducing, but it doesn't just 'disappear' because you can't think of a reason for it being there.  It continues to propagate.  Yes, it may eventually fall away from the gene pool, or it may be utilized in concert with other mutations or variations that come down the road.

Seriously man...how many damn examples of a system iteratively coming together and showcasing emergent functionality do you really need to get it into your thick skull that you are simply wrong that an entire system needs to be assemb