How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

Creationism, Evolution, and other science issues

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Purple Knight
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How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

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Post by Purple Knight »

This is not a question of whether or not evolution is crazy, but how crazy it seems at first glance.

That is, when we discard our experiences and look at claims as if through new eyes, what do we find when we look at evolution? I Believe we can find a great deal of common ground with this question, because when I discard my experience as an animal breeder, when I discard my knowledge, and what I've been taught, I might look at evolution with the same skepticism as someone who has either never been taught anything about it, or someone who has been taught to distrust it.

Personally my mind goes to the keratinised spines on the tongues of cats. Yes, cats have fingernails growing out of their tongues! Gross, right? Well, these particular fingernails have evolved into perfect little brushes for the animal's fur. But I think of that first animal with a horrid growth of keratin on its poor tongue. The poor thing didn't die immediately, and this fits perfectly with what I said about two steps back paying for one forward. This detrimental mutation didn't hurt the animal enough for the hapless thing to die of it, but surely it caused some suffering. And persevering thing that he was, he reproduced despite his disability (probably in a time of plenty that allowed that). But did he have the growths anywhere else? It isn't beyond reason to think of them protruding from the corners of his eyes or caking up more and more on the palms of his hands. Perhaps he had them where his eyelashes were, and it hurt him to even blink. As disturbing as my mental picture is of this scenario, this sad creature isn't even as bad off as this boar, whose tusks grew up and curled until they punctured his brain.

Image

Image

This is a perfect example of a detrimental trait being preserved because it doesn't hurt the animal enough to kill it before it mates. So we don't have to jump right from benefit to benefit. The road to a new beneficial trait might be long, going backwards most of the way, and filled with a lot of stabbed brains and eyelids.

Walking backwards most of the time, uphill both ways, and across caltrops almost the entire trip?

I have to admit, thinking about walking along such a path sounds like, at very least, a very depressing way to get from A to B. I would hope there would be a better way.

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Re: How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

Post #301

Post by brunumb »

William wrote: Wed Jan 26, 2022 4:18 pm The objective standard = 205
We oppose deception
Unconditional Love
The Same Information

The deserved second place = 212
The Confusion of War
I seem to have missed something. What is that stuff in blue and those numbers all about? :?
Christianty: 2000 years of making it up as you go along.

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Re: How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

Post #302

Post by William »

brunumb wrote: Wed Jan 26, 2022 5:38 pm
William wrote: Wed Jan 26, 2022 4:18 pm The objective standard = 205
We oppose deception
Unconditional Love
The Same Information

The deserved second place = 212
The Confusion of War
I seem to have missed something. What is that stuff in blue and those numbers all about? :?
It is incontrovertible evidence which I also use in congruity with my Message Generating Process.

Both processes support the theory that there is a Creative Cosmic Consciousness [mind] wherein there is nothing which is truly random, including the formation of this universe.
Therein, the universe is shaped mindfully rather than mindlessly.

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Re: How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

Post #303

Post by alexxcJRO »

Difflugia wrote: Tue Jan 25, 2022 1:48 pm The "controversy" isn't whether genetic differences accumulate at consistent rates for closely related organisms or whether those rates themselves begin to diverge, but why those rates diverge. If we can narrow down exactly what variables are responsible, we can estimate the divergences themselves, allowing a much more accurate determination of when various clades diverged from each other. Various causes have been proposed, like organism size, genome length, reproduction rate, and even things like local climate conditions.
Local climate conditions are known as I see it to be the cause in the sense of a perfect storm where more positive feedback loops activated and enforce each other in complex way leading to an exponential increase in diversity. Similar to the activation of more positive feedback in the case of global warming in a complex mechanism of enforcement which past a certain threshold would lead to an exponential dangerous increase in temperature and lead to runaway global warming.
Origin of deep burrowing ("Cambrian substrate revolution”) the Ediacaran biota suffered a mass extinction, which lead to an increase in the abundance and complexity of burrowing behaviour. Which had big effect on the substrata which transformed the seabed ecosystems. Substrate oxygenation.
Origin of massive biomineralization caused by increased of certain minerals because of regolith erosion, modification in rate of sea floor spreading, CO2 levels.
Sea level rise/climate change.
Rise in oxygen levels because of change in plankton levels.
The above lead to increase in nutrient flux, habitable volume, oxygenation which increased food web complexity and lead to an increase in the animal diversity and increased the probability of fossils creation(massive biomineralization).

Image
Image
https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn ... xtinction/

Also oxygen levels in the ocean dropped dramatically (anoxia) during the late Cambrian which coincided with the time of a global extinction.
Q: So what is the logic?
Q: God created great diversity in early Cambrian only to destroy it later in late Cambrian?:?
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Re: How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

Post #304

Post by Difflugia »

alexxcJRO wrote: Thu Jan 27, 2022 4:01 am
Difflugia wrote: Tue Jan 25, 2022 1:48 pm The "controversy" isn't whether genetic differences accumulate at consistent rates for closely related organisms or whether those rates themselves begin to diverge, but why those rates diverge. If we can narrow down exactly what variables are responsible, we can estimate the divergences themselves, allowing a much more accurate determination of when various clades diverged from each other. Various causes have been proposed, like organism size, genome length, reproduction rate, and even things like local climate conditions.
Local climate conditions are known as I see it to be the cause in the sense of a perfect storm where more positive feedback loops activated and enforce each other in complex way leading to an exponential increase in diversity. Similar to the activation of more positive feedback in the case of global warming in a complex mechanism of enforcement which past a certain threshold would lead to an exponential dangerous increase in temperature and lead to runaway global warming.
The molecular clock that I was talking about isn't about species diversity in a population sense, but about the rate of observed change since two species diverged from a common ancestor. In a broad sense, we can measure the number of genetic differences between two related species and divide by the number of years since those populations diverged from a common ancestor. That rate will be similar for similar species, but more distant species will have different rates. The question is what variables are responsible for those different rates.

The kind of diversity you're talking about has more to do with population dynamics than rate of mutation.
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Re: How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

Post #305

Post by Sherlock Holmes »

Jose Fly wrote: Tue Jan 25, 2022 1:46 pm [Replying to Sherlock Holmes in post #279]
FYI, I will wait until you finish replying to the rest of my post before I post my reply.
I apologize, I think I owe you a reply, please bear with me Jose!
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Re: How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

Post #306

Post by alexxcJRO »

Difflugia wrote: Thu Jan 27, 2022 8:34 am
alexxcJRO wrote: Thu Jan 27, 2022 4:01 am
Difflugia wrote: Tue Jan 25, 2022 1:48 pm The "controversy" isn't whether genetic differences accumulate at consistent rates for closely related organisms or whether those rates themselves begin to diverge, but why those rates diverge. If we can narrow down exactly what variables are responsible, we can estimate the divergences themselves, allowing a much more accurate determination of when various clades diverged from each other. Various causes have been proposed, like organism size, genome length, reproduction rate, and even things like local climate conditions.
Local climate conditions are known as I see it to be the cause in the sense of a perfect storm where more positive feedback loops activated and enforce each other in complex way leading to an exponential increase in diversity. Similar to the activation of more positive feedback in the case of global warming in a complex mechanism of enforcement which past a certain threshold would lead to an exponential dangerous increase in temperature and lead to runaway global warming.
The molecular clock that I was talking about isn't about species diversity in a population sense, but about the rate of observed change since two species diverged from a common ancestor. In a broad sense, we can measure the number of genetic differences between two related species and divide by the number of years since those populations diverged from a common ancestor. That rate will be similar for similar species, but more distant species will have different rates. The question is what variables are responsible for those different rates.

The kind of diversity you're talking about has more to do with population dynamics than rate of mutation.
Q: So when we talk of Cambrian explosion in respect to Radiodonta groupe and Artiopoda group we talk of greatly diversification of species of a Precambrian pre-existing phylum or a faster molecular clock which created more rapidly new phylum in animalia ?
"It is forbidden to kill; therefore all murderers are punished unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets."
"Properly read, the Bible is the most potent force for atheism ever conceived."
"God is a insignificant nobody. He is so unimportant that no one would even know he exists if evolution had not made possible for animals capable of abstract thought to exist and invent him"
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Re: How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

Post #307

Post by Difflugia »

alexxcJRO wrote: Thu Jan 27, 2022 10:08 amQ: So when we talk of Cambrian explosion in respect to Radiodonta groupe and Artiopoda group we talk of greatly diversification of species of a Precambrian pre-existing phylum or a faster molecular clock which created more rapidly new phylum in animalia ?
The "molecular clock" is a way to estimate how long ago two species shared a common ancestor. It has little to do with diversity in terms of the number of species.
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Re: How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

Post #308

Post by Sherlock Holmes »

Jose Fly wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 3:15 pm
Your remark is a good example of policing knowledge, it embodies the "official" position on truth and that is my primary complaint about evolution, not the hypotheses themselves but the strict intolerant way it is taught.
It's called "doing your job". Honestly, you're kind of all over the map on this issue. On one hand you insist you're not advocating for an "anything goes" style of teaching and that you don't want the students to just be given data and told to "figure it out for themselves". But OTOH, whenever I say that teachers generally have to stick to the curriculum, suddenly that's "policing knowledge".
I think there's a thin line between teaching science and teaching truth, this is the crux of my point. We should encourage students to not regard scientific theories as absolute truths, we should remind them - and often - that these are all models, human crafted models that could be wrong despite any strong correlation with observation.
Jose Fly wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 3:15 pm So how about we get specific here. What exactly do you want to change in K-12 public school science education? Be as specific as you can please.
I'd introduce Philosophy as a core subject as is done in many parts of Europe.
Jose Fly wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 3:15 pm
Remember science is not truth, theories are models, man made representations of presumed mechanisms and processes, today's cherished theory can become tomorrows academic curiosity, history.
Yep, and if evolutionary theory is overturned that will be taught. And if that never happens, we keep teaching the current state of the science, which is solidly in support of evolution.
Well I don't know if that would happen, I mean were talking about a discipline where the literature is filled with "evolution is a fact" either explicitly or implicitly, this tells me that the subject itself takes a very defensive position, almost intolerant of hard criticism, that doesn't inspire me with confidence. Those challenging it or challenging aspects of it are routinely disparaged, one need only call them "creationists" and the ridicule begins, then its a simple matter to dismiss their arguments as the ranting of a "Bible thumpers" and so on.
Jose Fly wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 3:15 pm
We teach Newtonian celestial mechanics for goodness sake and that is defunct as a theory, it wrong, falsified, replaced by a different - very different - theory. Why do you not say "Because if you have students graduate thinking that gravitation is an inverse square law, that time is universal, then we've done a terrible disservice our kids? because that is what schools teach
Because it's still used and because relativity incorporates much of it. So Newtonian physics serves as a good basis for eventually understanding relativity.
Yes the theory has utility, pragmatism I know that but it is absolutely epistemologically wrong in so many ways. Time is not universal, changes in gravitational potential do not propagate at infinite speed, light is affected by gravitation not immune to it and so on. From a theoretical point of view (not a utilitarian point of view) it is as wrong as can be!
Jose Fly wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 3:15 pm
How many "scientific communities" do you think there are? what if there are some that disagree among themselves? how does on handle that?
I don't know the exact number, but it's quite a few. Just the list of various national academies of science is pretty long. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_academy#List

And specific to this topic, do you have any info indicating that any scientific organization disagrees with the others regarding evolution?
Sure, the list Dissent from Darwin with over a thousand signatures of professors, teachers, researchers is one such I suppose.
Jose Fly wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 3:15 pm
That depends on the source of the difficulty, if it a system that has "evolution is a fact" deeply entrenched then one is not facing a scientific challenge but primarily a cultural challenge...

...That "evolution is a fact", this is a lie, it is a model, a hypothesis that rests upon a great deal of inductive reasoning, no other scientific hypothesis in the sciences is referred to as a "fact".

Making such claims is a disservice to science, it's intent is very clearly to discourage dissent nothing more.

There are of course facts, that fossils exist if a fact, that some are remnants of bizarre or fearsome animals from the past is a fact, that animals genomes change over time is a fact, that random mutations can and do occur during cell replication, these are all facts but the statement "evolution is a fact" is a lie. The stringing together of a multitude of facts using induction as the glue does not make a new fact, it is and should always be referred to as a model, theory, hypothesis.
I think we need to clear this up. Do you believe that no population has ever evolved? Not one has ever evolved a new trait, ability, or genetic sequence? Not one new species has ever been observed to evolve?
I do not know; that change takes place is inarguable given the mechanism of genetics; that we can infer that all life is the result of that starting with say bacteria, is a different claim altogether, as I say there's no fossil evidence that the rather sophisticated Cambrian fauna had any common ancestry, these pretty sophisticated morphologies (representing more or less the simultaneous initial appearance of most of today's phyla) already well diversified do seem to have suddenly appeared, the record is consistent with that, of course the might have emerged gradually, each species might have a long lineage, those lines might have branched from common ancestors, but the evidence we have is what I'd expect to see if the complexity dramatically ramped in a very short time.

Note the 24 hour clock analogy used in the video I posted, here's the clip, the analogy starts at this point, just click it:



That right there is evidence not of evolution though. Most of the phyla we see today appear more or less simultaneously, already differentiated from one another with still no trace of common ancestry, that right there is evidence that something other than evolution caused these things to exist.

Why, tell me why, I should believe each of the phyla had an ancestry, that any pair of phyla had a common ancestor when there is no trace of them? Isn't it the atheist who refuses to believe without evidence? well they contentedly believe without evidence all the time it seems to me!

Let me also emphasize something it is paleontologists who label this an "explosion" not just skeptics, in their eyes this appears to have been a dramatic sudden event, that is what "the scientific community" says.
Jose Fly wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 3:15 pm Also, what exactly are you referring to when you use the term "evolution"? For clarity's sake, I'm using the term as it is commonly used in biology, i.e., as a reference to changes in allele frequencies in populations over time.
I'm referring to the hypothesis that life can increase in sophistication and function due to random mutation and natural selection operating over great lengths of time. That in principle a bacteria colony could - in time - give rise to fish say.
Jose Fly wrote: Mon Jan 24, 2022 3:15 pm
That is "a scientific community" not "the".
Okay, so the community of evolutionary scientists is who one would need to persuade in order to alter how evolution is taught.
Dawkins invented "meme" it was never in any prevailing "scientific literature"
As I understand it, he coined the phrase but his proposal was based on earlier work by others.
Meyer's book was very well received by many scientists look
Well without evaluating those folks and what they actually said, at best that's fewer than 20 people. The book was published 8 years ago, and I've seen no indication that it has had any impact on the field of evolutionary biology. There have also been some rather scathing reviews. Have you read any of those?
Yes I have read several of those reviews, many of them were rebutted by Meyer. If a culture has been subliminally taught that "evolution is a fact" that those who question it are "creationists" (with all the connotations that carries these days) then is it any surprise that you'll see only a small number of scientists considering the book with an open mind? basically the evolution lobby has succeeded in discrediting critics simply on the basis that they are critics, what they have to say or argue is routinely dismissed as this and similar forums prove.
When one has eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

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Re: How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

Post #309

Post by alexxcJRO »

Difflugia wrote: Thu Jan 27, 2022 10:37 am
alexxcJRO wrote: Thu Jan 27, 2022 10:08 amQ: So when we talk of Cambrian explosion in respect to Radiodonta groupe and Artiopoda group we talk of greatly diversification of species of a Precambrian pre-existing phylum or a faster molecular clock which created more rapidly new phylum in animalia ?
The "molecular clock" is a way to estimate how long ago two species shared a common ancestor. It has little to do with diversity in terms of the number of species.
Q: So when we talk of Cambrian explosion in respect to Radiodonta groupe and Artiopoda group we talk just of greatly diversification of species of a Precambrian pre-existing phylum?

Q: What is the Creationists problem with Cambrien explosion?

Sorry about all this questions. I know for you they may look super dumb. :P
English is not my native language and sometime its more hard to perfectly understand more complicated things or I don't make myself understood.
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Re: How Crazy does Evolution Seem?

Post #310

Post by Sherlock Holmes »

This is - or should be - instructive to any open minded evolution advocate.

Here are some excerpts from a critique of the film I used above Darwin's Dilemma:
It’s a breathlessly duplicitous movie, enlisting scientists like Simon Conway Morris and James Valentine, who (I think) accept evolution, into implicitly endorsing ID by their very appearance in the movie. Either these scientists are secret IDers, or, more likely, they agreed to appear without knowing that the movie would be a vehicle for creationism.
Besides Conway Morris and Valentine, several more dubious characters appear as talking heads. Courtesy of The Discovery Institute, we get Jon Wells, Paul Nelson, and Stephen Meyer, all dolled up in jackets and trying to talk like real scientists.
Simon Conway Morris is a published and recognized authority in paleontology, here's some excerpts from a talk he gave at the Royal Society: (emphasis mine)
The Cambrian ‘explosion’ is widely regarded as one of the fulcrum points in the history of life, yet its origins and causes remain deeply controversial.
Hypotheses to explain the Cambrian ‘explosion’ continue to be generated, but the recurrent confusion of cause and effect suggests that the wrong sort of question is being asked.
My main conclusion is that the Cambrian ‘explosion’ is a real event. This does not mean, however, Darwin's dilemma is quite the problem it may at first appear. It does seem most likely that for the vast bulk of the Precambrian there were no animals, for reasons reviewed above.
The massive burst of diversification we see in the Cambrian itself is a real event.
Here's more, a shameless personal attack on Conway Morris.

That right there is an example of the intolerance so common when expressing any kind of skepticism of evolution in any way. no matter he is a respected scientist, no matter he is a member of the Royal Society, no matter that he is the Chair of Evolutionary Paleobiology at Cambridge, no matter that he is a well published scientist, no, he can't be a real scientist because he is not an atheist!

Basically according to Jerry A. Coyne one cannot be a scientist unless one is also an atheist - I wonder how many of you here also share that view!

That my friends is what were dealing with, fanatical, radical, intolerance that is the modern face of atheism.
When one has eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

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