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Author Topic:   Evolution and the BIG LIE
Kitsune
Member (Idle past 2495 days)
Posts: 788
From: Leicester, UK
Joined: 09-16-2007


Message 31 of 108 (441386)
12-17-2007 12:27 PM
Reply to: Message 28 by mobioevo
12-17-2007 10:51 AM


Re: Out of context
Ah, the noble practice of quote mining. I have yet to meet a creationist who checks out the correct context of a quote from an evolutionary scientist before pasting it.

BTW the very act of quoting in this way, whether the quote is accurate or not, is a logical fallacy called the argument from authority. In other words, "this is so because (x) says so." It's understandable why creationists use this fallacy though, as it is the way fundamentalists seem to define their relationship with God and reality.

For more information on quote mining and the ways that scientists' words are used and abused, you can read here.


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mobioevo
Member (Idle past 4139 days)
Posts: 34
From: Texas
Joined: 12-13-2007


Message 32 of 108 (441388)
12-17-2007 12:31 PM
Reply to: Message 22 by RAZD
12-17-2007 8:16 AM


Re: the Theory of Evolution definition
RAZD writes:

The Theory of Evolution is that all the diversity of life is explained by a synthesis of several validated theories on how hereditary traits in populations change from generation to generation; it includes theories on how change is enabled, and it includes theories on how changes made within each generation are selected.

I still don't like this definition because (1) it is still ambiguous due to the use of the phrase "several validated theories on how hereditary traits in populations change from generation to generation." What are these theories on hereditary change? If I were to give this definition to a group of students in an evolutionary biology course they would look at me with a dumb look. You and I may know what the theories for hereditary change are but not everyone else does.

(2) You theory only covers life while hereditary change can cover non-life such as viruses, transposable elements, and other non-living but biological systems.

Maybe it would be better to drop the whole "Theory of Evolution" phrase and stick with just "evolution." Using the "theory of evolution" phrase is like saying, "the theory of cell biology," or "the theory of physics." Maybe in the 1500's it was useful to use the term "the theory of physics" but now it is unnecessary. In the same way, the term "theory of evolution" is unnecessary.

If you are interested in diversity of life maybe you should define the theory of biodiversity instead, which would include evolution in its definition.

Edited by mobioevo, : clarification


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Wounded King
Member (Idle past 2290 days)
Posts: 4149
From: Edinburgh, Scotland
Joined: 04-09-2003


Message 33 of 108 (441395)
12-17-2007 12:59 PM
Reply to: Message 30 by crashfrog
12-17-2007 12:23 PM


Re: Icon Problems
The problem is that Wells - who is not a biologist - explains it wrong.

I'm in no way suggesting Wells is right about anything but he has been a practising developmental biologist, to the extent that he got a Ph.D. on a developmental topic. Admittedly he was steered into it by the Moonies and doesn't seem to have published any actual research since then but he did do relevant research at one time.

TTFN,

WK


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Larni
Member
Posts: 3984
From: Liverpool
Joined: 09-16-2005


Message 34 of 108 (441406)
12-17-2007 1:42 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by RAZD
12-16-2007 1:14 PM


Sure thing, mate.
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crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 35 of 108 (441408)
12-17-2007 1:55 PM
Reply to: Message 33 by Wounded King
12-17-2007 12:59 PM


Re: Icon Problems
I thought he was the lawyer. Who am I thinking of that's the lawyer? Is that Phillip Johnson?

I can't keep my creationists straight sometimes. They should make Creationist Cards with their faces and backgrounds and, I don't know, turn-ons and turn-offs or something.


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Kitsune
Member (Idle past 2495 days)
Posts: 788
From: Leicester, UK
Joined: 09-16-2007


Message 36 of 108 (441432)
12-17-2007 3:57 PM
Reply to: Message 35 by crashfrog
12-17-2007 1:55 PM


Re: Icon Problems
Don't forget to add a Get Out of Jail Free card to the deck for Dr. Dino. Turn-offs: being corrected in scientific matters by real doctors. IRS agents. Copyright laws and YouTube.

Sorry, couldn't resist.


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mobioevo
Member (Idle past 4139 days)
Posts: 34
From: Texas
Joined: 12-13-2007


Message 37 of 108 (441434)
12-17-2007 4:07 PM
Reply to: Message 22 by RAZD
12-17-2007 8:16 AM


Re: the Theory of Evolution definition
I checked out the link and find the previous definition. Maybe I lost the point of this thread if you already defined the "theory of evolution.'

I still feel the best way to communicate about evolution is to speak in the way other scientists talk. This is good practice so laymen, whether they believe in evolution or creationism, are not confused if they talk to other scientists outside this forum. I find the confusion of evolution in the general public most troubling. For decades evolution was hidden in the universities as scientist discovered all types of cool and interesting things, but they were not communicated to the general population Thus, today we have people that think evolution requires natural selection, a single common ancestor, or even that evolution disproves a Creator. You really need years of training to understand evolutionary theory in its current form and using a different vocabulary than scientist use today will just make this education gap between evolutionary biologists and the public wider.

This is why I don't think defining the "theory of evolution" is not a good thing to do. By having a divergence in the layman lexicon and the scientific lexicon, there will continue to be more confusion. It would be better to just explain what evolution is and how it can happen in models that use natural selection and/or genetic drift, than to get obsessive on what the theory clearly defines.

Edited by mobioevo, : minor edit


This message is a reply to:
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Elmer
Member (Idle past 4099 days)
Posts: 82
Joined: 01-15-2007


Message 38 of 108 (441448)
12-17-2007 6:13 PM
Reply to: Message 37 by mobioevo
12-17-2007 4:07 PM


Re: the Theory of Evolution definition
I'm with mobioevo on this one.

The fact of the matter here is that the BIG LIE in question is the big lie told by both Creationists and Darwinists, not only to each other, but to the public at large. A really big lie that has had the kind of overwhelming success that only really big lies and completely unbelievable assertions always seem to have. Both darwinists and creationists have not only completely convinced each other of its truth, but have duped the general public as well--thanks to their combined, strident insistence upon it.

The Really Big Lie is this--that evolution itself is equal to and synonymous with the darwinian "ToE". Meaning that to 'believe' in 'evolution', [which is a proven fact, not a belief], is to believe in "the" ToE. As if evolution would not, could not exist, if "the" 'ToE' were not to be fully accepted as an article of faith. Sort of like saying that 'god' would not, could not exist, if people did not believe in such an entity.

Another form in which this "Really Big Lie", [that evolution _is_ "the" one and only, "ToE"], is promoted by darwinists and creationists is through their mutual insistence that the "Intelligent Design" 'theory' of evolution is not a distinct, secular, scientific hypothesis wrt evolution's causal mechanism, but is merely another label for creationism. So successful has been their mutual insistence upon this lie that "ID" is now thought to be discredited. It isn't, but the name is.

Intelligent design 'theory', following from lamarck et al, and presently expressed in biological 'systems' theory and developmental, epigenetic evolution theory, is simply the hypothesis that living organisms, as biosystems, are able to harness a natural universal force to their own purposes, so that life may persist and flourish under a variety of environmental circumstances. That is, that evolution is the process by which lifeforms are intelligently designed by themselves and by their own forebears. Many, a vast number of, intelligent designers, all adjusting/adapting their bioforms to proximate and immediate environmental conditions, simply because that which bestows life, [the universal natural force], gives them both the power, and the compulsion, to do so.

Edited by Elmer, : Mistaken deletion


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Replies to this message:
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nator
Member (Idle past 365 days)
Posts: 12961
From: Ann Arbor
Joined: 12-09-2001


Message 39 of 108 (441449)
12-17-2007 6:37 PM
Reply to: Message 38 by Elmer
12-17-2007 6:13 PM


Re: the Theory of Evolution definition
quote:
The Really Big Lie is this--that evolution itself is equal to and synonymous with the darwinian "ToE". Meaning that to 'believe' in 'evolution' is to believe in "the" ToE. As if evolution would not, could not exist, if "the" 'ToE' were not to be fully accepted as an article of faith. Sort of like saying that 'god' could not, would exist, if people did not believe in such an entity.

1) You do realize that there are no Darwinists here, nor do they exist in the ranks of professional scientists, don't you? "Darwinism" was improved decades ago by incorporating the various fields of genetics, and also Puntuated Equilibrium. The theory is now referred to as "The Modern Synthesis".

2) I think you will find that nobody on the science side of this issue wants people to "believe" in evolution in a religious sense, no more than we want people to "believe" in a heliocentric solar system or that matter is composed of atoms, or that germs cause disease.

What I think we'd like to see is people well-educated in Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Cosmology, etc. "Belief" in any scientific concept without real understanding or knowledge is worthless.


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mobioevo
Member (Idle past 4139 days)
Posts: 34
From: Texas
Joined: 12-13-2007


Message 40 of 108 (441451)
12-17-2007 6:44 PM
Reply to: Message 38 by Elmer
12-17-2007 6:13 PM


Re: the Theory of Evolution definition
quote:
The Really Big Lie is this--that evolution itself is equal to and synonymous with the darwinian "ToE". Meaning that to 'believe' in 'evolution' is to believe in "the" ToE. As if evolution would not, could not exist, if "the" 'ToE' were not to be fully accepted as an article of faith.

I'm not sure what you mean here because, like I said in a previous post, the term "theory of evolution" really has no meaning. I understand what this thread is for because so many people use this statement, "the theory of evolution," as if it had some valuable meaning.

For example cell theory was developed in the 19th century after the use of the microscope. A lot of biologists doubted that the fundamental unit of life is a cell, but with mounting evidence with the advancement of microscopy technology, all the naysayers eventual relented and accepted the cell theory.

I use this as an analogy to the theory of evolution. Evolution was also formed in the 19th century, but took more years to hash out the details. First it was thought that natural selection could only produce change, but we didn't understand the hereditary mechanism that produced this change. Even before the structure of DNA was discovered, scientists understood that gene frequencies could change without selection acting on it. Eventually after we started to get a better idea of the genome, scientists theorized that most change in the genome may be due to neutral change and thus having no selection pressure acting on that change. Today when scientists study evolution they do not study the theory of evolution. If they find genetic diversity between two species, for example, they will study whether that change is due to selection or drift. Conducting an experiment showing "theory of evolution" exists would be pointless, and the researcher would be laughed out of the grant.

What we have now is many different factors affecting evolution. Just as a cell biologist may study the details of a cellular process, an evolutionary biologist may study the details of an evolutionary process. The underlining theories, cell and evolution, are not debated because they are considered principles, facts, and laws.

I've read many times on this forum that the theory of evolution predicts a singe-common ancestor that formed from a non-living thing. This is incorrect. Based on observations from the how evolution works and the current data from cell biology, genetics, and biochemistry do scientists make hypothesis about the origins of life. Discovering that an intelligent life created the first living thing or that there were multiple creation of life forms from non-living things will not falsify evolution, nor will it falsify the other disciplines of biology. What a discovery that that will do is falsify the origin of life hypothesis, which the data would be added to the other observations and a new hypothesis would be born.

quote:
Another form in which this "Really Big Lie", [that evolution _is_ "the" one and only, "ToE"], is promoted by darwinists and creationists is through their mutual insistence that the "Intelligent Design" theory of evolution is not a hypothesis wrt evolution's causal mechanism, , and so adapt [re-design] themselves to those purposes. That is, lifeforms that were intelligently designed by themselves and by their own forebears. Many, a vast number of, intelligent designers.

I have no idea what you are trying to say in the above quote.

Edited by mobioevo, : minor


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Elmer
Member (Idle past 4099 days)
Posts: 82
Joined: 01-15-2007


Message 41 of 108 (441459)
12-17-2007 7:02 PM
Reply to: Message 39 by nator
12-17-2007 6:37 PM


Re: the Theory of Evolution definition
Hi nator;

You say--


1) You do realize that there are no Darwinists here, nor do they exist in the ranks of professional scientists, don't you?

I don't know from, "the ranks of professional scientists", but I do know that this particular forum, [and every other 'evo-vs.-creo' forum to be found on the net], is literally crawling with them.


"Darwinism" was improved decades ago by incorporating the various fields of genetics, and also Puntuated Equilibrium. The theory is now referred to as "The Modern Synthesis".

Maybe that is what you call it, but the rest of the world calls "The Modern Synthesis", "darwinism".


2) I think you will find that nobody on the science side of this issue wants people to "believe" in evolution in a religious sense, no more than we want people to "believe" in a heliocentric solar system or that matter is composed of atoms, or that germs cause disease.

That's probably true of anybody coming from "the science side of this issue", but the truth is that people do not fly into apoplectic rages and start hurling bitter insults at people they don't even know, when they are simply debating the objective empirical merits of a given scientific hypothesis. Not if they are sane adults.

That should tell you that all the insult-hurling, snarling, snapping and howling defenders of darwinism in this forum are NOT, "on the science side of this issue", but are fighting an ideological battle to which their personal identities are tied emotionally. That ideology is evangelical atheism, [what they falsly misrepresent as 'secularism'], and that ideology is why they are emotionally driven to be here, and to scream here. Science has bugger-all to do with it.


What I think we'd like to see is people well-educated in Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Cosmology, etc. "Belief" in any scientific concept without real understanding or knowledge is worthless.

So true. But when I tell that to the darwinists, they refuse to listen.


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RAZD
Member
Posts: 19980
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 42 of 108 (441460)
12-17-2007 7:11 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by AdminNosy
12-15-2007 7:12 PM


Close Please. -- TOO OFF TOPIC for me to control
Could you close this thread.

It has gone way off topic and I don't have the time to catch all the run-away horses.

This thread is not supposed to be everybody's ideas about what the theory of evolution is or isn't but whether we can USE the definition provided.

Thanks


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Adminnemooseus
Director
Posts: 3886
Joined: 09-26-2002


Message 43 of 108 (441475)
12-17-2007 7:55 PM
Reply to: Message 42 by RAZD
12-17-2007 7:11 PM


Re: Close Please. -- TOO OFF TOPIC for me to control
Done

Adminnemooseus


New Members should start HERE to get an understanding of what makes great posts.

Comments on moderation procedures (or wish to respond to admin messages)? - Go to:
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Admin writes:

It really helps moderators figure out if a topic is disintegrating because of general misbehavior versus someone in particular if the originally non-misbehaving members kept it that way. When everyone is prickly and argumentative and off-topic and personal then it's just too difficult to tell. We have neither infinite time to untie the Gordian knot, nor the wisdom of Solomon.

There used to be a comedian who presented his ideas for a better world, and one of them was to arm everyone on the highway with little rubber dart guns. Every time you see a driver doing something stupid, you fire a little dart at his car. When a state trooper sees someone driving down the highway with a bunch of darts all over his car he pulls him over for being an idiot.

Please make it easy to tell you apart from the idiots. Source


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AdminPhat
Administrator
Posts: 1912
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-03-2004


Message 44 of 108 (442080)
12-19-2007 11:11 PM
Reply to: Message 42 by RAZD
12-17-2007 7:11 PM


Reframing the Topic Focus per RAZD request
Upon your request, I am reopening your thread with the following statement: (I changed the color...too gaudy otherwise}
The issue of the opening post was whether we could use this definition for evolution:

Evolution is the change in hereditary traits in populations from generation to generation

Or at least acknowledge that this can be used as a working definition for the sake of the argument to see what develops from it.

It was to set a foundation for further discussion, not to discuss examples of evolution or what could or could not happen - that will be covered later.

The consensus appeared to be yes, so we moved on to part 2.

The issue of Part 2 was whether we could use this definition for a "Theory of Evolution":

A Theory of Evolution is that all the diversity of life is explained by a synthesis of validated theories on how hereditary traits in populations change from generation to generation.

Or at least acknowledge that this can be used as a working definition for the sake of the argument to see what develops from it.

Again, it was to develop a foundation for further discussion, not to engage in discussions of examples of evolution or what could or could not happen - that will (still) be covered later - in part 3.

We never got to that consensus and this topic is being reopened so that can be done.

Part 3 will be examples of how this theory applies to some evidence to show that it works in those cases. At that point we can discuss examples where people think the theory above cannot explain the diversity of life, and whether this is due to contradictory evidence or just absence of evidence.

Thank you for your consideration.

Edited by AdminPhat, : edit


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RAZD
Member
Posts: 19980
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 4.1


Message 45 of 108 (442109)
12-20-2007 7:31 AM
Reply to: Message 41 by Elmer
12-17-2007 7:02 PM


Re: the Theory of Evolution definition
Now if we can get back to the definition issue, can we use:

A Theory of Evolution is that all the diversity of life is explained by a synthesis of theories on how hereditary traits in populations change from generation to generation.

Where we define evolution as the (actually observed) change in hereditary traits in populations from generation to generation, and trying to explain all the diversity of life from the historical, fossil and genetic record to what we know today, is the test?

If we agree on the theory then we can move on to examples that test the theory.

Thanks.


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we are limited in our ability to understand
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