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Author Topic:   Debating evolution
RAZD
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Message 14 of 91 (310613)
05-09-2006 9:15 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by SR71
05-09-2006 6:07 PM


The only difference you see is that He is a little shorter and had slightly smaller feet. Wow, 2,000 years and thats all thats happened. Not even any new special parts or aspects to us even being formed.

Notice that he agrees that there has been change. He then proceeds with the logical fallacy of argument from incredulity to make it seem totally insufficient evidence.

(see http://onegoodmove.org/fallacy/toc.htm for logical fallacies -- it usually helps to understand and recognize when such arguments are used)

Now we look at the fossil record and see the change in stature in hominids over the last 3 million years ("Lucy" was something between 3 and 4 ft tall). You can also see that there are noticable changes in the relative lengths of different bones, more than just the change in overall size.

So you are both agreed that change happens over very long periods of time with no sudden changes, such as "new special parts or aspects ... being formed" so that is not where the disagreement lies.

Where the disagreement lies is recognizing the long age of the earth. Age that makes the accumulation of slow change over time more than sufficient to explain all the diversity of life, versus denial of sufficient time. Age measured by other means that confirms that enough time was available.

When it comes to determining when "new special parts or aspects" are formed in any species you need to get him to define what he means, or you will just get the old "that's just minor change within a kind" excuse to brush it off.

You might want to wade through the {evolutionary chain} thread
http://www.evcforum.net/cgi-bin/dm.cgi?action=msg&f=5&t=632&m=1

or you might want to start at {Message 143} and pay attention to the horse development, especially of the hoof where it acts as a secondary pump to help blood circulation in the legs.

And remember, evolution is not about the development of new and special features ... it is just change in species over time. That the development of arms and legs from fins was always possible and never required.

And one other thing -- enjoy the 'battle' and use it as an excuse to learn, not just about the science but about how other people think.

Welcome to the fray eh?


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This message is a reply to:
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RAZD
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Posts: 20474
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
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Message 17 of 91 (310620)
05-09-2006 9:36 PM
Reply to: Message 4 by SR71
05-09-2006 6:29 PM


Ask for a date ... correlation
Anyone have a question I can ask as a super-stumper for him?

Ask him to explain not the age dating problems, but why there is such good correlations between all methods of dating.

See the {Age Correlations and an Old Earth: Part III} thread for some background.

Another good source is the {Correlation Among Various Radiometric Ages} thread.

Another is Radiometric Dating, A Christian Perspective, by Dr. Roger C. Wiens

The correlations of age with the annual phenomena (tree rings, lake varves, arctic snowfall) and radiometric dating techniques show that the earth is old old old.

Enjoy.


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RAZD
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Message 24 of 91 (310676)
05-10-2006 7:14 AM
Reply to: Message 18 by SR71
05-09-2006 11:02 PM


I don't know what it is about him, but he really loves to take little bitty things, completely irrelevant... throw them into the debate to get me off track.

They're not irrelevant to him. I used to think the same about these things, but what he is really arguing is that his religious view is right and {whatever other} is wrong.

As noted you need to keep him on a single topic at a time -- let him pick one if he agrees to stay to it.

Also don't let him get away with just making assertions -- you need the facts. Anyone can make assertions.

And watch out for the "Gish Gallop" ...

This message has been edited by RAZD, 05*10*2006 07:15 AM


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RAZD
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Message 30 of 91 (310847)
05-10-2006 7:02 PM
Reply to: Message 26 by SR71
05-10-2006 9:54 AM


I need to be able to tell him how we evolved from a single-celled organism.

This has been observed:

http://www.mcb.berkeley.edu/labs/king/NewFiles/Boraas%201998.pdf

For the experiments reported here, steady-state unicellular C. vulgaris continuous cultures were inoculated with the predator Ochromonas vallescia, a phagotrophic Flagellated protist (`Flagellate'). Within less than 100 generations of the prey, a multicellular Chlorella growth form became dominant in the culture (subsequently repeated in other cultures). The prey Chlorella first formed globose clusters of tens to hundreds of cells. After about 10-20 generations in the presence of the phagotroph, eight-celled colonies predominated. These colonies retained the eight-celled form indefinitely in continuous culture and when plated onto agar. These self-replicating, stable colonies were virtually immune to predation by the Flagellate, but small enough that each Chlorella cell was exposed directly to the nutrient medium.

Ask him how, if this has been observed today, it could not have happened in the past - is there some mechanism that would prevent similar behavior in other single cell organisms?

{abe}Ask him if colony species like corals are multicellular or single cell animals -- is there a benefit to being in a group rather than being individuals?{/abe}

quote:
... in the perfect shape with perfect materials,...
What I've said is that they didn't just evolve into the perfect animal...

Have him define "perfect" in this usage and then demonstrate that any organism has ever fit his definition.

The problem he will have is that "perfect" is a value judgement, and all that evolution operates on is {survival of the fittest at the moment}, it doesn't make value judgements.

This message has been edited by RAZD, 05*10*2006 07:05 PM


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RAZD
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Message 44 of 91 (311228)
05-11-2006 9:57 PM
Reply to: Message 31 by SR71
05-11-2006 9:57 AM


coral - ations and mathematical models.
(5) The moons gravitation pull on the earth has been slowly causing the days to lengthen. Because both gravitaional forces and friction loss can be computed, then we can determine how close the moon could orbit before resulting in lunar destruction or eradication of life on earth. With this in mind the eath/moon relationship could not possible be more than 1.2 billion years old, and geologic evidence indicates that it is much younger. geologic evidence is not the carbon dating or anything along those lines but the evidence I have provided to you.

"Creatortionistas" (creationists that distort the truth, like "Dr. Dino") like to use bad math to make their points. They do this because the know (1) the believers are not going to check the math if what he tells them correlates with their belief and (2) they can sound professional and scientific to the ignorant.

The basic premise is correct -- the effect of the moon's gravity on the earth, especially on the tides causes (a) the earth's rotation to slow down and (b) the moon's orbital energy to increase. The math that hovind uses after that is where his conclusion goes bogus.

Let's look at another piece of evidence for an old earth: corals, fossil corals, that have not only annual growth patterns but daily growth patterns, and have a repudable radiometric dating age and let's see if the evidence adds up.

We can assemble the bits and pieces, placing ancient cores by dates derived from radiometric testing (T-230 and P-231 are used for some), and while we can derive similar dates from two or more tests, this is hardly enough to impress people who doubt radiometric dating methods. Is there something else that will give us an independent confirmation?

The answer is yes, and it comes from the astrophysics of the earth-moon system. From "Coral Growth and Geochronometry> (Nature, March 9, 1963 By Prof. John W. Wells):

Astronomers seem to be generally agreed that while the period of the Earth's revolution around the Sun has been constant, its period of rotation on its polar axis, at present 24 h, has not been constant throughout Earth's history, and that there has been a deceleration attributable to the dissipation of rotational energy by tidal forces on the surface and in the interior, a slow-down of about 2 sec per 100,000 years according to the most recent estimates. It thus appears that the length of the day has been increasing throughout geological time and that the number of days in the year has been decreasing. At, the beginning of the Cambrian the length of the day would have been 21 h (ref. 1).

If we could determine, for example, that the number of days in the Cambrian year was of the order of 420, it would seem to confirm an indicated age of 600 million years based on tidal friction and in turn that since isotopic methods give the same result they too are in harmony.

The best of the limited fossil material I have examined so far is from the MiddleDevonian ... Diurnal and annual growth-rates vary in the same individual, adding to the complexity, but in every instance there are more than 365 growth -lines per annum. usually about 400, ranging between extremes of 385 and 410. It is probably too much, considering the crudity of these data, to expect a narrower range of values for the number of days in a year in the Middle Devonian; many more measurements will be necessary to refine them.

A few more data may be mentioned: Lophophllidium from the Pennsylvanian (Conemaugh) of western Pennsylvania gave 390 lines per annum, and Caninia from the Pennsylvanian of Texas, 385. These results imply that the number of days a year has decreased with the passage of time since the Devonian, as postulated by astronomers.

Point 1: -- These are calculations made by professional astro-physicists on the rotational period of the earth versus age of the earth, they are made by the same knowledge of physics that lands rovers on mars in the area that was chosen to land in. Their prediction is that 600 million years ago the day was 21 hours long and there were 420 in a year. This clearly is NOT a young earth (nor is Hovind's "date" of 1.2 billion years, btw)

Point 2: -- They predicted that fossil corals that show daily growth rings would show this change in rotational period as increased days in annual growth, and the radiometric dating of the fossil puts them at the right age for the rotational period calculated by the astro-physicists.

Old earth validated by the evidence showing that the rotational period did in fact change in just the way that the asto-physicists calculated. But that's not all -- let's look at the earth\moon system age issues.

First the ages of each:
http://pubs.usgs.gov/gip/geotime/age.html

The best age for the Earth (4.54 Ga) is based on old, presumed single-stage leads coupled with the Pb ratios in troilite from iron meteorites, specifically the Canyon Diablo meteorite. In addition, mineral grains (zircon) with U-Pb ages of 4.4 Ga have recently been reported from sedimentary rocks in west-central Australia.

The Moon is a more primitive planet than Earth because it has not been disturbed by plate tectonics; thus, some of its more ancient rocks are more plentiful. Only a small number of rocks were returned to Earth by the six Apollo and three Luna missions. These rocks vary greatly in age, a reflection of their different ages of formation and their subsequent histories. The oldest dated moon rocks, however, have ages between 4.4 and 4.5 billion years and provide a minimum age for the formation of our nearest planetary neighbor.

Point 3: -- This is real geological evidence that shows that the earth is 4.54 billion years old and the moon is a close second (based on very limited data) at 4.5 billion years old. Any rock can date younger, but that isn't evidence of a younger earth or moon.

Logical conclusion: they were formed at the same time, about 4.5 billion years ago.

Also note (from the same source):

Thousands of meteorites, which are fragments of asteroids that fall to Earth, have been recovered. These primitive objects provide the best ages for the time of formation of the Solar System. There are more than 70 meteorites, of different types, whose ages have been measured using radiometric dating techniques. The results show that the meteorites, and therefore the Solar System, formed between 4.53 and 4.58 billion years ago.

Pretty good agreement on the age of the solar system so far.

Now from
http://csep10.phys.utk.edu/astr161/lect/moon/moon_formation.html

Five serious theories have been proposed for the formation of the Moon (not counting the one involving green cheese):
  1. The Fission Theory: The Moon was once part of the Earth and somehow separated from the Earth early in the history of the Solar System. The present Pacific Ocean basin is the most popular site for the part of the Earth from which the Moon came.
  2. The Capture Theory: The Moon was formed somewhere else, and was later captured by the gravitational field of the Earth.
  3. The Condensation Theory: The Moon and the Earth condensed together from the original nebula that formed the Solar System.
  4. The Colliding Planetesimals Theory: The interaction of earth-orbiting and Sun-orbiting planetesimals (very large chunks of rocks like asteroids) early in the history of the Solar System led to their breakup. The Moon condensed from this debris.
  5. The Ejected Ring Theory: A planetesimal the size of Mars struck the earth, ejecting large volumes of matter. A disk of orbiting material was formed, and this matter eventually condensed to form the Moon in orbit around the Earth.

These analyses indicate that the abundances of elements in Lunar and Terrestrial material are sufficiently different to make it unlikely that the Moon formed directly from the Earth. Generally, work over the last 10 years has essentially ruled out the first two explanations and made the third one rather unlikely. At present the fifth hypothesis, that the Moon was formed from a ring of matter ejected by collision of a large object with the Earth, is the favored hypothesis; however, the question is not completely settled and many details remain to the accounted for.

There is some controversy on this issue of the formation of the moon:
http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/older_earth_020828.html

A pair of new studies has helped pin down how long it took Earth to form, breaking down the final barrier of disagreement over the precise timing but creating a problem for the leading theory of the Moon's formation.

Earth reached mature size 30 million years after the Sun's birth, the two independent results show. This is in line with the leading theoretical model and most other indicators.

However, this is about 70 million years quicker than what was expected by Moon formation theorists. These researchers' computer models have the satellite being carved from a nearly mature Earth by a large impact about 100 million years after the origin of the solar system.

Cameron said the new dates might call into question the leading theory of the Moon's formation. That theory holds that about 100 million years after the Sun's birth, the Earth was about 90 percent of its full size and was hit by a single Mars-sized object. The impact kicked up material that went into orbit around the planet and gathered together to become the Moon.

(the leading theory of the Moon's formation linked above says:

For 25 years, scientists have pondered a theory that the Moon was created when an object the size of Mars crashed into Earth less than 100 million years after the Sun was born, some 4.6 billion years ago. The general idea has been run through the paces and massaged into shape and is now the favored explanation.

Point 4: -- There is disagreement on how the earth moon system formed, but all these theories are consistent with an earth and moon formed 4.5 billion years ago, and these theories are being promoted by those same astro-physicists that predicted the rotational period of the earth that was validated by the coral fossils. Clearly the mathematics of the earth-moon system does not collapse in a mere 1.2 billion years when done properly.

One final point.

Because both gravitaional forces and friction loss can be computed, then we can determine how close the moon could orbit before resulting in lunar destruction or eradication of life on earth.

Mathematical models never prove anything. It is a model of reality that involves making assumptions and it is used to make predictions: it is only as good as the assumptions involved. Models are tested against reality, not to see if reality is wrong, but to see if the model is accurate. If the results predicted by the model are not reflected in reality, then the model is changed.

If a mathematical model shows that Hurricane Katerina could not have hit New Orleans, then one has to assume that either the mathematical model is wrong or recent experience is wrong. Only logically challenged people would side with the mathematical model and say that recent experience is wrong.

If a mathematical model is at odds with reality it is not the reality that is wrong.

Enjoy.


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This message is a reply to:
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RAZD
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Posts: 20474
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.6


Message 61 of 91 (311344)
05-12-2006 7:25 AM
Reply to: Message 46 by SR71
05-11-2006 10:33 PM


With that said how does a single cell organism without a thought process and logic evolve a logic that is able to comprehend and learn.

For one thing, it seems he is asking a (normal for creationiist) misunderstanding -- how a complete system evolved in one species all at once. They don't, the evolve piecemeal over the lifetimes of many many individuals, but also over the lifetimes of species.

For another, his is mistaken that humans are the only ones. Not just our near relatives that are now extinct (Neanderthals and others) but a wide assortment of species show logical ability. You even have monkeys with a sense of "fairness" --

Researchers studying brown capuchin monkeys (Cebus apella) have found that the highly social, cooperative species native to South America show a sense of fairness, the first time such behavior has been documented in a species other than humans.

Capuchin monkeys are the stereotype "organ grinder" monkeys, btw. Quite small.

Another aspect is art:
http://www.earthtrust.org/delrings.html

We are not alone, we just happen to have the most developed (that we know of) brain.

Communicating with another species is more a matter of communicating than of having someone to talk to.

How does this evolve? Slowly, over time, with each step of awareness and then cognition improvement selected by increased ability to survive. It doesn't need to all "happen" in one species.


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RAZD
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From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
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Message 82 of 91 (311705)
05-13-2006 8:16 AM
Reply to: Message 64 by SR71
05-12-2006 10:49 AM


"but my source is NASA and your source is just scientists."

NASA is scientists plus political appointees that have no clue about science. There was a recent broohaha about one that was pushing creationist propoganda. Thus just citing "NASA" doesn't mean anything -- he could be citing janitors at NASA for all you know.

"Just scientists" - that cracks me up. How about scientists in the field of study that you are debating? A PhD in astrophysics does not mean they know jack about evolution.


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RAZD
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Posts: 20474
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Joined: 03-14-2004
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Message 83 of 91 (311707)
05-13-2006 8:23 AM
Reply to: Message 68 by SR71
05-12-2006 11:23 AM


I disprove his main points so instead of continuing to defend them, he simply brings in more.

This is a common tactic when the argument itself has failed.

Note (to him) that every attempt to change the topic is a failure to defend his previous argument.

Point out to him that he has abandoned his previous unsubstantiated and now undefended assertion and is now making more of the same.

This must mean that he does not have any answer to your points, or he would have presented them.

Tell him you will be happy to move on to the next topic if he will acknowledge that.

Make it a stock response to his attempts at "the gish gallop" and number them.

When you get to 42 let me know what the question was ...


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RAZD
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Posts: 20474
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
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Message 84 of 91 (311710)
05-13-2006 8:29 AM
Reply to: Message 73 by SR71
05-12-2006 8:49 PM


How can I go about proof that non-living materials can come together and form a living organism? He keeps telling me that I skip it every time he brings it up.

(1) this is not part of evolution. Evolution can start with a single reproducing cell from {elsewhere} over 3.5 billion years ago, and still proceed to the life we know on this planet.

(2) this is abiogenesis -- do a google for a lot of information, try wikipedia, etc

(3) for my take on the possibilities of abiogenesis see Columnist's Corner ⇒ RAZD - Building Blocks of Life}

{abe} ps -- some references are from NASA ... :D {/abe}

Edited by RAZD, : added info


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RAZD
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From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
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Message 89 of 91 (312614)
05-16-2006 9:30 PM
Reply to: Message 88 by Cthulhu
05-15-2006 4:26 PM


In fact, studies indicate that Homo sapiens appeared approximately 40,000 years ago.

Make that 160,000 to 200,000 years ago.
160,000-year-old fossilized skulls uncovered in Ethiopia are oldest anatomically modern humans

There is also evidence that humans went through a "bottleneck event."
The new batch - 150,000 years ago

There have been several "population explosions" in the course of our past, one associated with clothes, one with refined hunting tools, one with agriculture, one with domesticated animals, one with industry ... in each case a technological innovation allowed greater productivity or greater adaptability.

The other thing to note is that population growth is an expotential curve -- not linear -- and only when there is no balancing force.

Thus the hominids could have existed for millions of years in balance with the predators and deaths from disease and elements, etc, and then when a technological innovation (say clothes) allowed greater numbers to survive (and breed) longer.

Usually when math says something could not have happened which has, it is based on false assumptions and bad calculations.

Here we have both.


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RAZD
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Message 91 of 91 (313630)
05-19-2006 7:15 PM
Reply to: Message 90 by Alasdair
05-18-2006 7:03 PM


skin
You grow an entire new skin in something like 7 to 8 weeks (IIRC).

Ever wonder where all those dead cells go? (Hope you shower a lot eh?)

Enjoy.


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