Yes, I thought I was clear that I'm objecting to that definition, not that I'm not aware of it. It's a tendentious question-begging definition that obscures the fact that you still have the same genome and therefore the same species, not a new species in the sense you would have to have to validate the claims of the ToE. All that has happened in most cases is that you get a very small population that has become reproductively isolated and inbred over many generations, and the inbreeding over those many generations of this group with severely reduced genetic diversity does lead to genetic incompatibility with the original population. It's still the same species nevertheless and the term "speciation" only serves to obfuscate that fact. I refer to it by that name anyway, but every time I do I have to append all these caveats and qualifications.
You're saying that when scientists think a species is descended from another species, in reality they're the same species, but the descendent species has reduced genetic diversity. If this were true then the descendent species would possess only a subset of alleles of the parent species, and it would have no alleles unique to itself. No genetic analysis has ever revealed any such thing, therefore you're wrong.
No genetic analysis has ever revealed any such thing, therefore you're wrong.
No genetic analysis has ever revealed new allele frequencies in a daughter population? How odd.
I said nothing about allele frequencies.
What I said was that if your claim were true that what scientists believe are descendant species are actually just reduced genetic diversity as compared to the parent populations, then the descendant species would possess only a subset of alleles of the parent species, and they would have no alleles unique to themselves.
But no genetic analysis has ever revealed any such thing, therefore you're wrong.
I think what she means is that she is only interested in speciation that produces new kinds.
I think we all agree with Faith that breeding can produce substantial differences from the parent species, that they're still the same species, and that this *can* happen under natural conditions. But Faith is also claiming that what scientists think are identifiable examples of real speciation is actually just that same process at work. The evidence we have rules out that possibility.
I should have said: It would be odd if no genetic analysis found differing allele frequencies in a daughter population because that is what I'm talking about.
Yes, I know you're talking about differing allele frequencies being the driving force behind speciation. If that were true then what scientists believe are descendant species should have only a subset of alleles of the parent species and no extra alleles not possessed by the parent species. But we never see this, so you're wrong.
I can't imagine what genetic analysis you'd be talking about, considering that what I'm describing is so common.
What you're describing is breeding, not speciation. Take the closely related horse and donkey. Obviously they share a common ancestor since they're still similar enough to interbreed, and we know plenty about their genetics. The horse has 32 chromosomes, the donkey 31, and both have genes and alleles of genes that the other does not have. Therefore you're wrong.
Yes, of course I'm arguing with science directly here so of course you're going to object.
You're making things up, science studies reality, so you're actually arguing with reality.
If I could comment about another issue, the definitions of simple terms like mutation, gene and allele have not changed, and since they already have definitions you cannot assign them new ones. You'll need to come up with some short identifying phrases for any new concepts you'd like to introduce.
And if I could comment about one other issue, this thread isn't actually about your latest excursion into scientific fantasy. Frako wondered how people could so obstinately reject the simple evidence of reality. While you're providing an excellent example of the phenomenon, I don't think seeing it in action helps us understand exactly what is going on inside your head, at least not yet.
What? Please provide a link to proof of this accusation.
Why are you asking for proof of what you just said a few messages ago in Message 193:
Faith in Message 193 writes:
Of course we are and it's a struggle against the evolutionist definitions which don't define things as we define them. Just to convey the simplest things requires me to qualify and qualify to try to get free of the evolutionist assumptions.
Right there you said that creationists define terms (like mutation and allele) differently from science. But this is wrong on two counts. First this is wrong because creationists as a group haven't actually attempted to redefine these terms. They pretty much use the same definitions everyone else uses. And second, this is wrong because independent of whether evolution is right or wrong, those words already have definitions.
It's hard to avoid the feeling that you're trying to distract attention from your ridiculous position on speciation by even more ridiculously inventing your own definitions. But neither speciation nor evolutionary terminology are the topic of this thread. If you wanted to discuss the topic you could perhaps explain the evidence that led you to your position on speciation. It certainly couldn't be evidence from breeding, because breeders never believe they're creating new species. That's why they're called breeders and not speciators. If you could give us a glimpse of your evidence and your reasoning process that would be very helpful.
Picking up on what NoNukes focused on, in Message 215 you also said:
Mutations are considered to be accidents, and if they ever produce a viable beneficial allele it would be very rarely.
As NoNukes said, we agree that beneficial mutations are rare, but "rare" is a qualitative term and we need to be sure we mean the same thing by rare. Let me pull a very, very, very tiny number out of the air, say 1 in a billion (that's 1 in a thousand million or 1 in 109), as the odds of a mutation being beneficial in a human birth.
Every human birth has, on average, around 100 mutations. So the odds of getting a beneficial mutation in a human birth is 1 in 109*100, which is 1 in 107, or 1 in 10 million. That's a very small number.
But there are around 100 million births in the world every year, so multiplying 108 births by 10-7 beneficial mutations per birth we get 10 beneficial mutations. Every year. Year after year.
So do we therefore agree that beneficial mutations are rare but still occur in respectable numbers given the size of the world population? If you don't agree then you need to describe your objection so that we can categorize it. Some possibilities I can think of are:
Scientific viewpoint countered using evidence.
Dismissal with no counter-evidence.
Changes the subject.
Raises new objections while not addressing this issue.
Re: Now a real summary: evolution is dead but evolutionists don't know it
No, I have no interest in pursuing the actual topic of this thread beyond what I said in my first response to it. ... So I'm happy with my participation on this thread to this point and will probably wrap it up here.
Okay, thanks Faith.
For the rest of us it's time to take the data Faith has provided and see if it helps us answer the question of this thread, "WTF is wrong with people?" Naturally she cannot provide a full answer, but she is probably representative of a significant segment of fundamentalist mindset.
I think it's important that we keep distinct Faith's beliefs about evolution, the techniques she employed to maintain them, and the psychology behind both of those. In my view this thread is about the psychology.
The belief Faith focused on the most is that reduced genetic diversity leads to a type of speciation where there's a reproductive barrier but no genetic barrier, and further that this is the only type of speciation that ever really happens. She employed various techniques to defend this belief, which I list here:
She argued from the evidence, for instance drawing analogies with breeding and pointing out how rare beneficial mutations are.
Ignoring counter-arguments and counter-evidence, she often just repeated her beliefs, and just as often ignored responses, responding to little more than half of the messages posted to her.
She declared things to be true without evidence.
She deflected objections by raising other issues, such as criticism of the website or of the participants, or by ridicule, or by behaving outrageously, such as insisting on her own personal definition of words.
Just like everyone else Faith wants to be right, and also just like everyone else Faith recognizes that knowledge of the facts is key to being right. But Faith is faced with the additional problem that only some of the facts are consistent with her position, so she has to ignore some facts.
Faith deeply believes that she is a good person, that she isn't the type of person who would employ the underhanded debate approaches listed above, so she has to find valid reasons, at least within her own mind, for what she has to do to ignore inconvenient facts. She must believe that the facts contrary to her views are mistaken, or that they're not really germane. In many cases I think she doesn't understand the facts or their implications, and so believes they're not important.
But I am mystified how she justifies running off like this every time she's presented with stark evidence of error. Speaking personally I can't count the number of times I've witnessed a discussion with Faith narrow in on a key point of error only to have her quit. I think this irrational behavior is driven by anger, because in the past her exits have often been accompanied by outbursts of insults and innuendo. She seems to have expressions of that anger under control now more often than in the past, but I nonetheless believe that anger is behind this latest exit.
Fundamentalists do not come to their beliefs through evidence. For them it isn't evidence that holds primacy but belief. In their hierarchy belief is uppermost, while fact is subservient and malleable to be molded into a foundation of support for belief.
But that's not how evolutionists see it [speciation]. Here's the video with Dawkins giving the usual explanation:
This error goes back to Frako in Message 41 where he claims the video is about speciation. It's not. Right at the one minute mark the video says that DNA analysis shows that the population on the new island was still the same species as on the old. The Dawkins video is about evolutionary change, not speciation. Frako was wrong to present it as an example of speciation.
And again, you don't NEED mutations to get a new "species" because the new allele frequencies are quite sufficient to accomplish that.
But scientists don't believe a breed with all the same alleles as the parent species, just at different frequencies, is a new species, nor even a new "species", whatever you think putting quotes around it means, so you're wrong.
And you *do* need mutations to produce a new species, because otherwise the daughter population has merely a subset of the alleles as the parent population, and DNA analysis would quickly reveal that they're the same species. So you're wrong again.
First of all, the idea of evolution "continuing" after such a drastic reduction in a population's gen. diversity needs to be recognized as a far cry from the usual evolutionist picture of continuous increases in gen. diversity as new species continue to be formed.
Increasing genetic diversity is not what evolutionists believe is the driving force behind speciation. Descent with modification (involving both allele remixing and mutation) and natural selection are the driving forces behind speciation, so you're wrong again.
And you *do* need mutations to produce a new species...
I don't think this is true. You do need mutations of course,...
Yes, of course, but then you go on:
...but mutations are not timely. At any given time, there may be small numbers of mutants in the population.
Every member of a population is a mutant. There's never a point in time when it can be declared, "This is the genome of species X," and any deviation from that genome is a mutant, because species are constantly evolving. Given how much life must have changed since its fuzzy beginnings, every allele of every gene in every cell everywhere had its beginning as a mutation.
What you're describing sounds more like the pool of variation in any genome upon which species can draw, and which was the point of Frako's Dawkins video.
Evolutionary change is enough for it to be about for my purposes in responding to Frako.
No, it isn't enough for your purposes, unless one of those purposes is to never admit error. I called it Frako's error, you don't need to make it your own.
But since you bring it up it seems to me that Frako got the right idea about it if the lizards can no longer interbreed with the former lizard population on the original island, which I thought was said, but maybe I'm misremembering.
You're definitely misremembering. It's right there at minute 1 in the video. They're the same species on both islands, and the definition of species is related organisms capable of interbreeding. Here's the video, take 6 seconds of your time and start listening at the 1 minute mark:
Wikipedia gives that familiar little chart that shows four different ways speciation occurs and all four of them have in common that they involve a smaller population being reproductively isolated from a larger.
The diagram can be misleading. Only one of them requires a smaller population. Don't just look at the diagram, read the descriptions: Wikipedia article on Speciation.
Then if you look up the definition of Speciation you'll find it described as two new species forming from a former single species.
The simple dictionary definition would by necessity leave out the details and say, as does Answers.com, "The evolutionary formation of new biological species, *usually* by the division of a single species into two or more genetically distinct ones." But as the definition makes clear, division of a parent species into two new species is not the only way. Because reproduction is imperfect genomes are not fixed, and evolution over time is inevitable and unstoppable. Because of this species are not unchanging and cannot be unchanging, and even a population in a stable environment will still undergo evolutionary change over time and eventually become a different species genetically distinct from and incapable of breeding with their distant ancestors (who no longer exist).
But it does suggest something closer to what you keep saying, that DNA analysis shows that the new species is clearly not the same as the former species. So let me ask: where do you get this information, please supply a source.
Are you asking how we tell genetically whether or not two populations are the same species? I would have thought that knowing this would be something you'd understand you'd have to know about before making your claims about speciation. The division between species has long been known to be fuzzy. Sure, lizards and lions are different species, but are lions and tigers? Grey squirrels and red squirrels? Chihuahuas and St. Bernards? Sometimes the answer is obvious, sometimes not.
When the answer isn't obvious we often turn to DNA analysis. One simple approach is genetic distance, and from there the analyses can become more detailed and complex, comparing genomes to see which genes are present in each population, and which alleles for each gene are present in each population. And even DNA analysis can be inconclusive. For example, several DNA studies have been unable to conclusively demonstrate whether the bush elephant and the forest elephant are separate species.
I didn't say it [genetic diversity] is considered to be the "driving force" behind speciation or anything else.
Uh, yes, you did, unless I'm not allowed to use my own words when replying to you and you're merely claiming that you didn't use the words "driving force."
I believe it may have been PaulK who made that equation somewhere back there, when he was so astonished at the idea that evolution or phenotypic diversity requires a reduction in genetic diversity.
Now you're misstating your own claim. Your claim is not that "phenotypic diversity requires a reduction in genetic diversity." Your claim is that new phenotypic types only emerge after a reduction in genetic diversity.
Allele remixing only occurs when you get a population split.
In sexual reproduction, allele remixing occurs with every reproductive event. For example, you're a remixing of the alleles from both your parents. Descent with modification involves both existing alleles combined in ways not present in either parent, and mutations which create new alleles not extant in either parent and possibly not anywhere in the population.
Descent with modification either by allele remixing or mutation, and natural selection, amounts to the processes I'm describing, that form new phenotypes by reducing genetic diversity.
Except that mutation (new alleles, genes and even chromosomes) and natural selection (pruning of alleles, genes and even chromosomes) are working in opposite directions.
Anything that selects and isolates a portion of a population has this effect: it creates new allele frequencies and if the population is small enough it creates a reduced genetic diversity, and this creates a new trait picture or phenotype that becomes population wide after some number of generations of inbreeding.
But without mutation it's still the same species. You haven't explained the origin of species. You're claims are equivalent to denying speciation.
Sure you'd need mutations if you ever really did get a new species, but most mutations are just substitutions for alleles that are part of the species genome and couldn't do anything other than vary that one trait for that species in any case.
The tiniest mutations, single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP's) that simply replace one nucleotide with another, are the most common, but an SNP can turn entire sections of DNA on and off. Gene duplication happens with fair regularity. Virus's provide a source of inter-species gene transference. Mutations are a powerful transformative force in evolution.
When belief instead of fact drives understanding there will always be contradicting facts that must be ignored. Your views will have no persuasive power until they are factually inclusive instead of exclusive.
WHAT I MEANT WAS that the video didn't have to be about speciation for me to answer Frako since I'm objecting to ALL forms of "evolution" as understood in the way Dawkins presents this, as if microevolution and macroevolution are all the same, which is the main thing I've been answering.
The video says nothing about microevolution or macroevolution, and especially it doesn't say they're the same thing. The video is not about speciation either. It's about how surprisingly rapid the pace of evolution can be when environment changes.
WHAT I SAID WAS I might be misremembering that the new lizards were unable to interbreed with the original population.
And I confirmed for you that you were definitely misremembering. It is very uncommon (though certainly not unheard of) for populations of the same species to be unable to interbreed, and had that been the case then it would have been featured prominently since it would require explanation.
Of course if speciation WERE true it wouldn't be the same species...
Wrong again. Why ever would you think that evolution requires that phenotypic change be accompanied by species change. Have you somehow forgotten that evolution is well aware that there can be a great degree of phenotypic variation in some species? Have you forgotten the very familiar examples of dogs and pigeons? There are some significant phenotypic differences between the populations on the two islands, but these lizards are still the same species. After all, only 37 years had passed, so speciation is completely unexpected. But phenotypic change in response to environmental change is precisely what evolution expects, and there are some very familiar examples like the peppered moth, and these lizards are just another example.
You can't even remember what evolution says, no wonder you can't maintain any coherency as you attempt to disprove it.
Of course you did. You even quoted yourself saying it.
Faith, everyone can read your words. Your lack of understanding is reflected in the confusion of concepts that you present, and it isn't something you can hide. Just flatly issuing denial after denial isn't going to convince anyone. What convinces people are explanations that make sense of the facts. You don't even acknowledge most facts.
One thing I'll clarify: My comment about populations of the same species not being able to interbreed was made in the context of genetic analysis being the criteria for identifying species, not interbreeding. This is like a chihuahua and a Saint Bernard, which was one of the examples I mentioned in another context, being the same species yet not being able to interbreed naturally. I also said it was not very common, but we have to accept the world as it is, not as we wish it would be so that our definitions didn't have to have qualifiers.
The fundamental point is that if you think you already understand evolution when you obviously don't, how are you ever going to understand it? And if you don't understand evolution, how are you going to disprove it? Disproving things evolution doesn't say is a waste of time.
I believe it may have been PaulK who made that equation somewhere back there, when he was so astonished at the idea that evolution or phenotypic diversity requires a reduction in genetic diversity.
Now you're misstating your own claim. Your claim is not that "phenotypic diversity requires a reduction in genetic diversity." Your claim is that new phenotypic types only emerge after a reduction in genetic diversity
I've said it both ways many times.
Faith, they don't mean the same thing. If you've said it both ways many times then you've been expressing two different and mutually exclusive views. If you're this confused about your own views, how do you expect to understand anything else about evolution?
Incredibly lengthy and detailed denials of error and confusion that only contain more error and confusion are not helping your cause. And they're not worth responding to because instead of clearing up the mistakes they only bring more, and more detailed, denials.