Scientific theories and reality:

Discussion in 'General Science & Technology' started by paddoboy, Jul 6, 2014.

  1. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    You may think you have, but in fact your posts are so cursory it's impossible to glean any such explanation from them. You have repeatedly given us the Creationist interpretation of Gould's 1980 conference remarks on punctuated equilibrium, but you have not ever discussed the actual content of the curriculum in evolution as it's taught today. Are you telling us you disbelieve evolution because the curriculum doesn't cover punctuated equilibrium? Then you're wrong. Are you telling us that species only evolve through punctuated equilibrium? Then you're wrong there, too, unless you wish to tell us the Darwin's finches are examples of punctuated equilibrium. But that would be ludicrous.

    Since all of the stuff you have posted hinges on macroevolution, it does not state a thesis against the core principles of evolution. Those core principles address speciation events, not the topic you are narrowly focused on, which is, that it appears to shock you insofar as the rates of diversity at the boundaries of geologic eras where fossils seem to record radical changes (actually no one is certain, but Gould makes certain assumptions to allow for it to be assumed true).

    You are ignoring the actual subject of evolution, which addresses the particular speciation events at Galapagos, by which evolution in general was at once explained. To be clear: there was no special creation. This was the principle Darwin overturned. That is, the creatures on the Galapagos evolved there--long after their ancestors had established themselves in S. America. This he knew because he knew the islands popped up out of the ocean floor after the ancestral species had established themselves in S. America.

    So that brings me back to my point: you never have explained your reasons for opposing evolution.

    As for abiogenesis, you've only stated that you "simply can't believe life emerged from non-life" (paraphrasing your remarks). You have never addressed the absurdity of assuming that life did not evolve from non-life. I asked you, but you only disparaged the question, what, other than life from non-life is even possible? Therein lies the rub. At least list the options:

    1. Life was brought to Earth by alien terra-formers.
    2. Life magically appeared out of thin air (but not from the gradual chemical reactions in the primordial soup).
    3. God created life.
    4. God does not exist, therefore some other entity created life.

    Feel free to add to the list if I've missed your explanation. But please just be clear and tell us what your explanation is.

    You said "a brain is a substance". That leaves it completely unclear what you mean. A brain is not actually a substance, it's a main organ of the body. It's not even really made of substances, but of living tissue. But what of it? What in the heck does "intelligence without substance" even mean? What does it have to do with evolution or abiogenesis? If you wish to be understood you should strive to be clear.

    The thousands of site pages arguing that Gould's 1980 remarks on punctuated equilibrium disproves evolution is patently creationist. You will not find any site on Earth that supports such a claim, unless they are Creationist is origin.

    Why are you defending them? (They are not "alleged creationist". They are "proven creationist".) Here's another case where you respond as a creationist while vehemently denying that you are. Your expressed indignation, fake or not, doesn't change the fact that you are posting anti-science links in defense of anti-science beliefs that you are defending (such as telling us that evolution does not embrace punctuated equilibrium or implying that the Darwin's finches are examples of punctuated equilbrium [if that is your claim, which you have not explained as I just covered above].)

    According to your posts, the main reason you don't believe in evolution is because you think Gould overturned the core principles in his 1980 remarks. But that's wrong.

    I assure you you won't win any prizes for your posts. I won't win any, and I at least elaborate a little in my explanations of my own ideas. You give us little or nothing, so it leaves us in a lurch. But when you offer us creationist sites (not alleged to be creationist, leopold, that's not being honest), and you do so in support of creationist claims, i.e., special creation (unless you wish to amend your posts and answer responsively to the 4 explanations I listed which are alternatives to abiogenesis) - then you simply leave readers no choice.

    But you're wrong about why the science educated folks here are arguing against you. It's because you are posting statements which we know to be false. It's our nature to respond, to confront misrepresentations of science with the facts and evidence that are being ignored or disputed.

    The only reason I challenged you on this is because your post offered creationist links in support of your own statements. You even insisted that some of their bogus claims are true. So to contradict yourself now seems more than just a little odd.

    No, I am only attacking the errors in your posts, not you personally. My conclusions that you seem to be a creationist are based on prima facie evidence of your posts. That's an assessment. It's necessary in order to decide how to reply to you. I typically tell the fundies here that their posts are fallacious not because they hold a religious belief, but because they believe in special creation, which defies the evidence of nature. That is, they are willing to adopt a lie over a truth made plain by facts and evidence. It's a fatal flaw, and it poisons all the discussion. Who wants to engage a liar, other than to defeat their claims? But I don't treat you in that same category since you keep telling me you're not a fundie. It just defies common sense that you won't explain yourself. Recently, when I asked for such explanations, you said several times "I don't believe in intelligence without substance". Were you ever a Catholic? Because you've borrowed from a phrase taken from the Council at Nicea. In any case, this still makes no sense. I have no idea what you are trying to say about intelligence. As you know, intelligence is the ability to learn. Fish can learn, but you don't seem to be referring to primitive intelligence. And it makes no sense anyway. Intelligence requires a cerebrum, sensory stimulation, and an alert state of the brain. So what in the world are you talking about? And what does this answer have to do with the question why are you supporting, rather than attacking, creationist claims. That's not even close to an ad hom.

    Ok then let me try it this way: I'm still interested in seeing you post candid and complete explanations of what you mean, and why you've adopted the positions you take. What motivates you to oppose the whole world, if not religion? You aren't claiming to have arrived any new theory of your own, which overturns the adopted theories, so what other than religion is your reason for rejecting these foundations of scholarship?

    This remark was in reply to some remarks you made against "book learning" (paraphrasing). You seem to have no formal training in science, and you occasionally speak against science as if it's a conspiracy or a propaganda machine or otherwise broken. At the same time, I've never noticed you criticizing the anti-science propaganda from some of the creationist sites you occasionally post. What would cause you think like that, other than religious indoctrination? That's what I've been asking you for several weeks now.

    The 1980 article published in Science is not an endorsement by the editors of any particular theory. It's a report of something that made the news in the science community because Gould was advocating something rather poorly understood and somewhat controversial. But that's all irrelevant. Gould did not overturn evolution, so you have no basis to oppose evolution, as you say here, based on this particular respected source. All Gould did was to offer another theory about fragmentary evidence. And since Gould's explanation has been incorporated into the curriculum he is not overturning the core principles. Darwin's finches are typically shown in a inset on the same page, or within a few pages of the treatment of punctuated equilibrium. You know (or knew) what I'm talking about, because many of us have posted links such as the following which I'm adding here to jog your memory. Really, you're just getting "stasis" and "rapid change" confused as something that overturns the core principles. But it doesn't--that's all I've been trying to tell you for a couple of years or so.
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  3. origin Heading towards oblivion Valued Senior Member

    One article trumps millions of biologist and genticists? One article trumps 100 years of accumulated evidence? Anyway this article does not even say there is a problem with evolution it is simply offering a different hypothesis to the mechanics of evolution. So if you are 'hanging your hat' on this article then you have to accept the basis of the hypothesis that evolution exists.

    You are grasping at straws and missing badly, very badly.

    If you want to say god is responsible for the all of life and the evidence is just misinterpreted by man then say that. Trying to use science to prove that evolution is not real is a fools errand.
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  5. leopold Valued Senior Member

    like i said, think what you will.
    if you don't want to see it, that's your problem not mine.
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  7. brucep Valued Senior Member

    Really? It's a problem for those who don't read your nonsense posts. That's what the ignore button is for.
  8. Aqueous Id flat Earth skeptic Valued Senior Member

    I think leopold has for so long hung his hat on the creationist claim that Gould overturned Darwin, that he's lost the ability to read and understand the links to the actual curricula like the one I posted above. BTW the quality of technical illustrations and the clear concise narrative of that link is typical of modern texts. Leopold is just stuck in some very old mindset, unaware of how much educational materials have improved.
  9. paddoboy Valued Senior Member


    I'm unable to Imagine that at all. It just appears so concocted. And then of course we have Pauli's exclusion principal, EDP and NDP....And if I continued wouldn't all matter then end up as BH's?
  10. paddoboy Valued Senior Member


    Which does not invalidate in anyway the fact that Abiogenesis still had to have occurred somewhere else.
    If our Universe was attuned so that would happen, then it is still life from non life, that non life being spacetime from which everything arose anyway.

    Not a scientific response. And then the question needs to be asked, did God arise from non life anyway.

    As in the previous option.

    I would bloody well hope so!
    If that ever stopped, we may as well go back to swinging in the trees from whence we once evolved.
  11. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    Welcome to the wonderful world of cosmology, the place where physics, philosophy and pure mathematics converge... very awkwardly.

    Considering relativity, black holes, the uncertainly principle, quarks and leptons, dark matter, and myriad other utterly counterintuitive aspects of the universe that have been discovered in the last four or five generations, do you seriously expect the nature of the universe, when we finally get it all mapped out, to be intuitive?
  12. paddoboy Valued Senior Member


    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

    Point taken....But as I did add, things shrinking, do seem to have limitations shall we say? Pauli's exclusion Principle, EDP and NDP for starters.
  13. forrest noble Registered Senior Member

    Good comments. I live in Los Angeles and am now going down to Tijuana, Mexico, about 2 1/2 hours from here. I will pick up on your comments when I get back, probably Saturday afternoon PST. You will see that there is nothing difficult about any of it, according to the model.

    until then, cheers
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2014
  14. Russ_Watters Not a Trump supporter... Valued Senior Member

    So does that mean you already knew that the math of QM matches observations and has incredible predictive power? Were you just pretending not to?
    Oops, guess not: Again, that long hisory of observations - and successful predictions - makes QM about the most successful theory ever.
  15. paddoboy Valued Senior Member


    Agreed, and at the top echelon of near certainties for scientific theories, along with SR, GR, Evolution, Abiogenesis, and the BB/Inflationary model of Universal/spacetime evolution.
  16. brucep Valued Senior Member

    Thanks for posting the excellent teaching link.
  17. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    Evolution and abiogenesis do not fall into the same category. We have mountains of evidence for evolution, from two unrelated sciences: paleontology and genetics. This makes evolution not merely a "near certainty," but one of the most solid theories in the canon of science--one that no scientist expects to ever be falsified. The only challenges to evolution come from the religious fundamentalists, who can be summarily dismissed as crackpots with an agenda.

    Abiogenesis, on the other hand, is still missing key evidence, notably: "No one has yet synthesized a 'protocell' using basic components which would have the necessary properties of life (the so-called 'bottom-up-approach')." Not only is abiogenesis not in the category of canonical theories, but a strict adherence to scientific terminology (which, as I have often lamented, is shockingly rare in the halls of science) suggests that it is not even quite ready to be called a theory at all.

    Admittedly, there is impressive experimental evidence on both sides of this gap. But to bridge the gap, about all it has going for it is the fact that there is no respectable competing hypothesis. There were no cells, and then there were cells, the basic building blocks of life on the only planet known to host life. So logically, cells must have somehow formed from the primordial ooze.

    Nonetheless, science's "internal spell-checker," as it were, does not allow the word "somehow" in its theories. That would put us one notch below the creationists, who do indeed at least have an explanation, even if it raises more questions than it answers.
  18. paddoboy Valued Senior Member


    I must disagree with that view overall.
    You said it yourself.....At one time there were no cells, then there were cells.
    It is in fact the only logical answer.
    The actual observations and details may be missing, and the exact nature of Abiogenesis, but we do have plenty of observational evidence of chemistry and the possible conditions for that chemistry.
    Science is providing a plausible naturalistic "only choice" explanation of Abiogenesis, and that's far more reasonable than the Christian version which says it's a mythical supernatural based magic show.
    I see Abiogenesis akin to "being beyond a reasonable doubt" and just as we make assumptions about the homegenous and Isotropic nature of the Universe, I think the same call can be made with regards to life from non life and chemistry.
  19. Arne Saknussemm trying to figure it all out Valued Senior Member

    The thing about abiogenesis as has been said is that genesis still had to have occurred somewhere else, so we're right back to square one, are we not? Whether life arose here or elsewhere, isn't the question really how it arose at all?
  20. leopold Valued Senior Member

    you must have a hefty set of balls to accuse a respected source of lying.
    you either believe what was printed, or you don't.
    i believe it was fair reporting.
    so, GO FOR IT ! ! !
  21. wellwisher Banned Banned

    I accept the general principles of evolution; life changes with time based on a selection process. But where I differ is in the explanations behind the this change. The reason I depart from the status quo is all the existing models do not take water fully into account, even though water was there from the beginning and is not replaceable by any other solvent. How can you ignore that and expect the model to be real? It is like a theory of gravity that leaves out mass or distance as important variables. Instead of a logical approach, we will need to conjure with random assumptions to fill in the blind void.

    The genetic material has changed over time and can be modified (methylation) in situ, but water stays the same. Nothing works in the cell, without water being present, yet this is not a main variable in the current models, based on its level of global interaction. If you leave out a main variable how can you be right? This explains why it is forever stuck in random and empirical mode with one tire missing. One tires missing makes it hard to ride straight making an oracle necessary to help you predict where the three tired car will drift.

    If you look at natural selection there is a sense of ordering. Mother nature does not play dice in any given situation, or that would not be selection but a random process that changes each cycle. The selection is based on the sum of the potentials in the environment, which can include instinct. Yet another assumption is the DNA changes randomly due to mutations.

    This does not add up properly, since you have a random process as the main chemical variable, ultimately being at the mercy of an external selection process that has logic based on potentials. One process throws the dice, while the other only accepts 2 or 6, even before the dice is thrown. Yet nature always seems to adapt. Something does not add up. It makes more sense to have a middleman variable, between the selection of 2 or 6, and the random dice, so the dice become loaded to fall closer to the needs of the selection; water.

    The assumption of a random universe, which is basis for the various statistical oracles, cannot explain why protein folds are unique or have a probability of 1.0, even though the conditions of thermal energy are there to satisfy the assumption of a random folding distribution. Water overrides this random universe inside the cell, allowing protein folds to escape the assumptions of the statistical and random universe oracles.

    This one observation challenges the entire random universe assumption when it comes to life. In that universe there is no such thing as probability equal to 1.0. The majority of organics in the cell; protein, are induced into unique folds, thereby creating a very specific material capacitance matrix, not based on random. This is much closer to the selection assumption, with the selection process occurring right down to the chemical level, because of the conditions set by water. It is still natural selection but based on nano-environments, with water/organics a source of external potential.
  22. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    Of course we do. That's why every respectable scientist assumes abiogenesis. But an assumption is not evidence. A hypothesis is elevated to the status of a theory only by being proven true beyond a reasonable doubt. Assumptions have absolutely no place in this process!

    Of course. But being "more reasonable" is not the same as being proven true beyond a reasonable doubt, even if both phrases happen to contain the same word: "reasonable."

    "Akin?" Well sure. As the Linguistics Moderator I am happy to accept "akin to being (proven) beyond a reasonable doubt." That phrase specifically means that it is not the same as being (proven) beyond a reasonable doubt.

    Well sure. And scientists have made some remarkable discoveries since the 1950s (IIRC) when they were striking (simulated) primordial ooze with (simulated) lightning and astounding themselves with the results. As I said above, today no respectable scientist doubts the reality of abiogenesis, although there is tantalizing evidence that life on Earth may have actually been catalyzed by bits and pieces of other solar systems that were captured and carried here by comets.

    Either way, the religionists will surely jump up and say, "See, these guys base their beliefs on faith, just like we do." When that happens I will once again have to digress and explain the difference between reasonable faith (e.g., my dog has been kind and faithful to me for 14 years, so it's reasonable for me to assume that she will continue to be so until the end-of-life medications she's now taking sooner or later lose their effectiveness) and unreasonable faith (e.g., priests in the Bronze Age, when writing was first invented, wrote down some fairytales and pretended they were answering questions that they actually had no answers for, but some vast supernatural force was inspiring them to actually write the truth).

    I don't understand. Who doesn't include water in their personal version of abiogenesis??? If you're not seeing it explicitly, it's probably because it is assumed. Those "primordial ooze" experiments in the 1950s took place in a vat of ooze, which was primarily water.

    Huh? Water is not a variable, it is a constant!

    This is not an assumption. We've been playing with the evolution of bacteria for a long time now, since they can go through three generations in a single day. We watch the mutations in their DNA. You seem to be a few years behind the information curve.

    No, you got off on the wrong foot so your conclusions are off base. Sorry.

    I'm surprised that you're not aware of the intensive work with the DNA of bacteria. This is a key process in the development of antibiotics.

    Of course we're now also tinkering with the DNA of animals and plants. But it's just not the same when it takes you (and your descendants) 300 years to work through 300 generations, instead of one year.
  23. leopold Valued Senior Member

    maypole, 12 leashes, dollar each.

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