Absurdity of evolution

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Absurdity of evolution

Post #1

Post by EarthScienceguy »

How is evolution even possible in light of the following?

1. Haldane's Dilemma

The cost of substitution Cs is 30 and it is paid off in installments (Ps)of 0.1 each generation. At that rate, it takes (Cs/Ps) 300 generations to pay the cost of substituting one gene. Haldane's conclusion was over the long term the average rate of gene substitution is no better than one gene every 300 generations. (Crow and Kimura, 1970 p 244-252; Crow 1968 p 168-173; Ewens 1979 p 252-256; Merrell 1981 p 187-193)

In a human-like population with a nominal generation time of 20 years 10 000 000/(20x300) = 1667nucleotides could have been changed. That is 0.000047% of the human genome. For 1% of the human genome to be changed in this fashion would take 210,000,000,000 years.

Haldane's dilemma ended the idea of selection causing evolution.

How is there time for evolution?
How can there be evolution without selection?

2. Kimura's Neutral theory of evolution

Kimura is credited with coming up with the solution to Haldane's dilemma. He suggests that neutral mutations is the way that most of the genome was changed.

Error catastrophe is when harmful mutations accumulate too fast and genetic deterioration becomes unavoidable. The standard genetic model the one model taught in every evolutionary textbook -predicts that error catastrophe occurs when the mutation rate gets much above one harmful mutation per progeny. (that is 0.5 harmful mutations per gamete per generation) At that rate, each progeny typically has one more harmful mutation than its parents. Above this threshold, the species would rapidly accumulate harmful mutations from generation to generation.

Kimura estimates that amino-acid altering mutations are roughly ten times more likely to be definitely harmful than neutral. (kimura 1983, p 199; King and Jukes 1969 p 795) That would indicate that the expressed neutral mutations cannot be more common than 0.05 per gamete per generation.

The neutral theory predicts that the neutral substitution rate is equal to the neutral mutation rate per gamete. (Kimura 1983 p 46-48) Therefore, expressed neutral mutations are substituted no faster than 0.05 per generation. In ten million years, a human-like population could substitute no more than 25000 expressed neutral mutations. That amounts to 0.00007% of the genome. So that means if 1% of the human genome were to change it would 14,000,000,000 it is closer to the age of the universe.

How would evolution have time to occur?

3. Punctuated Equilibria

Punctuated Equilibria was developed in response to seeing cladogenesis in the fossil record and not anagenesis. Punctuated equilibria has three central postulates.

Postulate 1: Most evolution occurs in short, rapid bursts (called punctuation events) followed by stasis. This produces a large morphological gap.

Postulate 2: Most evolution occurs at speciation (in other words, punctuation events are closely tied to speciation)

Postulate 3: Speciation has no inherent directionality. A daughter species tends to originate in a random, non-adaptive direction from the parent species.

Punctuated equilibria destroy the idea of discernable phylogeny in the fossil record. Punctuationists declare that evolution is a labyrinthine bush, not an identifiable tree.

How can evolution be true if phylogeny is not discernable in the fossil record?

Remine, Walter The biotic message
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Re: Absurdity of evolution

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Post by Miles »

.


Just as a FYI, unless you post your sources for the above you're committing plagiarism. A DC&R no, no.


Addition:
Noting the "Remine, Walter The biotic message" you've added. As a source citation, just the name of a source and its author doesn't qualify, but I leave it up to otseng to decide.

Have a good day


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Re: Absurdity of evolution

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Post by brunumb »

EarthScienceguy wrote: Tue Nov 09, 2021 4:00 pm How is evolution even possible in light of the following?
If all of that is verified and valid, then how do you explain the fact that the theory of evolution has not been discarded and the brilliant minds who eventually succeeded in discrediting it have not been lauded to the skies. Very telling.
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Re: Absurdity of evolution

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Post by DrNoGods »

[Replying to EarthScienceguy in post #1]
How is evolution even possible in light of the following?

1. Haldane's Dilemma
Evidently Haldane was wrong ... and writing 64 years ago (1957) when genetics was still in a nascent state of understanding it isn't surprising that he didn't get everything right. This Wikipedia article:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haldane%27s_dilemma

has the following comments (reference numbers in above link):

"Motoo Kimura's landmark paper on neutral theory in 1968[2] built on Haldane's work to suggest that most molecular evolution is neutral, resolving the dilemma. Although neutral evolution remains the consensus theory among modern biologists,[3] and thus Kimura's resolution of Haldane's dilemma is widely regarded as correct, some biologists argue that adaptive evolution explains a large fraction of substitutions in protein coding sequence,[4] and they propose alternative solutions to Haldane's dilemma."
2. Kimura's Neutral theory of evolution

Kimura is credited with coming up with the solution to Haldane's dilemma. He suggests that neutral mutations is the way that most of the genome was changed.
As the first link above suggests, Kimura isn't the only person who has addressed this issue (by far). A more recent example is this (and its references):

https://cdnsciencepub.com/doi/full/10.1 ... -2019-0051
How can evolution be true if phylogeny is not discernable in the fossil record?
Why is phylogeny not discernable in the fossil record?

https://www.britannica.com/science/phyl ... nary-steps

There are people on this site who are far more knowledgeable on this subject than I am that I expect will chime in. But you are fighting a losing battle because evolution is still the prevailing "best" explanation for how life diversified on this planet. Cherry picking a couple of items to try and discredit 150+ years of supporting evidence doesn't change that.
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Re: Absurdity of evolution

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Post by bluegreenearth »

EarthScienceguy wrote: Tue Nov 09, 2021 4:00 pm How is evolution even possible in light of the following?

1. Haldane's Dilemma

The cost of substitution Cs is 30 and it is paid off in installments (Ps)of 0.1 each generation. At that rate, it takes (Cs/Ps) 300 generations to pay the cost of substituting one gene. Haldane's conclusion was over the long term the average rate of gene substitution is no better than one gene every 300 generations. (Crow and Kimura, 1970 p 244-252; Crow 1968 p 168-173; Ewens 1979 p 252-256; Merrell 1981 p 187-193)

In a human-like population with a nominal generation time of 20 years 10 000 000/(20x300) = 1667nucleotides could have been changed. That is 0.000047% of the human genome. For 1% of the human genome to be changed in this fashion would take 210,000,000,000 years.

Haldane's dilemma ended the idea of selection causing evolution.

How is there time for evolution?
How can there be evolution without selection?

2. Kimura's Neutral theory of evolution

Kimura is credited with coming up with the solution to Haldane's dilemma. He suggests that neutral mutations is the way that most of the genome was changed.

Error catastrophe is when harmful mutations accumulate too fast and genetic deterioration becomes unavoidable. The standard genetic model the one model taught in every evolutionary textbook -predicts that error catastrophe occurs when the mutation rate gets much above one harmful mutation per progeny. (that is 0.5 harmful mutations per gamete per generation) At that rate, each progeny typically has one more harmful mutation than its parents. Above this threshold, the species would rapidly accumulate harmful mutations from generation to generation.

Kimura estimates that amino-acid altering mutations are roughly ten times more likely to be definitely harmful than neutral. (kimura 1983, p 199; King and Jukes 1969 p 795) That would indicate that the expressed neutral mutations cannot be more common than 0.05 per gamete per generation.

The neutral theory predicts that the neutral substitution rate is equal to the neutral mutation rate per gamete. (Kimura 1983 p 46-48) Therefore, expressed neutral mutations are substituted no faster than 0.05 per generation. In ten million years, a human-like population could substitute no more than 25000 expressed neutral mutations. That amounts to 0.00007% of the genome. So that means if 1% of the human genome were to change it would 14,000,000,000 it is closer to the age of the universe.

How would evolution have time to occur?
Here is what I found on Wikipedia regarding this particular issue:
The "neutralist–selectionist" debate
A heated debate arose when Kimura's theory was published, largely revolving around the relative percentages of polymorphic and fixed alleles that are "neutral" versus "non-neutral".

A genetic polymorphism means that different forms of particular genes, and hence of the proteins that they produce, are co-existing within a species. Selectionists claimed that such polymorphisms are maintained by balancing selection, while neutralists view the variation of a protein as a transient phase of molecular evolution. Studies by Richard K. Koehn and W. F. Eanes demonstrated a correlation between polymorphism and molecular weight of their molecular subunits. This is consistent with the neutral theory assumption that larger subunits should have higher rates of neutral mutation. Selectionists, on the other hand, contribute environmental conditions to be the major determinants of polymorphisms rather than structural and functional factors.

According to the neutral theory of molecular evolution, the amount of genetic variation within a species should be proportional to the effective population size. Levels of genetic diversity vary much less than census population sizes, giving rise to the "paradox of variation" . While high levels of genetic diversity were one of the original arguments in favor of neutral theory, the paradox of variation has been one of the strongest arguments against neutral theory.

There are a large number of statistical methods for testing whether neutral theory is a good description of evolution (e.g., McDonald-Kreitman test), and many authors claimed detection of selection (Fay et al. 2002, Begun et al. 2007, Shapiro et al. 2007, Hahn 2008, Akey 2009, Kern 2018). Some researchers have nevertheless argued that the neutral theory still stands, while expanding the definition of neutral theory to include background selection at linked sites.

Nearly neutral theory
Tomoko Ohta also emphasized the importance of nearly neutral mutations, in particularly slightly deleterious mutations. The population dynamics of nearly neutral mutations are only slightly different from those of neutral mutations unless the absolute magnitude of the selection coefficient is greater than 1/N, where N is the effective population size in respect of selection. The value of N may therefore affect how many mutations can be treated as neutral and how many as deleterious.
If a lack of sufficient time for evolution to occur is a serious possibility that the experts ought to be considering, shouldn't we expect the debates among experts in the field to be centered around this question? Please note, while the Kimura's Neutral Theory is still being debated by experts in the field, none of those experts are arguing about whether there would be enough time for evolution to occur or not. Is this because the consensus of experts are overlooking what you appear to believe is an obvious flaw in the Theory of Evolution or because they are doing the necessary research and experiments but have yet to find any credible evidence anywhere to suggest that there isn't enough time for evolution to have occurred?
EarthScienceguy wrote: Tue Nov 09, 2021 4:00 pm 3. Punctuated Equilibria

Punctuated Equilibria was developed in response to seeing cladogenesis in the fossil record and not anagenesis. Punctuated equilibria has three central postulates.

Postulate 1: Most evolution occurs in short, rapid bursts (called punctuation events) followed by stasis. This produces a large morphological gap.

Postulate 2: Most evolution occurs at speciation (in other words, punctuation events are closely tied to speciation)

Postulate 3: Speciation has no inherent directionality. A daughter species tends to originate in a random, non-adaptive direction from the parent species.

Punctuated equilibria destroy the idea of discernable phylogeny in the fossil record. Punctuationists declare that evolution is a labyrinthine bush, not an identifiable tree.

How can evolution be true if phylogeny is not discernable in the fossil record?
Here is what I found on Wikipedia regarding this particular issue:
Richard Dawkins regards the apparent gaps represented in the fossil record as documenting migratory events rather than evolutionary events. According to Dawkins, evolution certainly occurred but "probably gradually" elsewhere. However, the punctuational equilibrium model may still be inferred from both the observation of stasis and examples of rapid and episodic speciation events documented in the fossil record.

Dawkins also emphasizes that punctuated equilibrium has been "oversold by some journalists", but partly due to Eldredge and Gould's "later writings". Dawkins contends that the hypothesis "does not deserve a particularly large measure of publicity". It is a "minor gloss," an "interesting but minor wrinkle on the surface of neo-Darwinian theory," and "lies firmly within the neo-Darwinian synthesis".

In his book Darwin's Dangerous Idea, philosopher Daniel Dennett is especially critical of Gould's presentation of punctuated equilibrium. Dennett argues that Gould alternated between revolutionary and conservative claims, and that each time Gould made a revolutionary statement—or appeared to do so—he was criticized, and thus retreated to a traditional neo-Darwinian position. Gould responded to Dennett's claims in The New York Review of Books, and in his technical volume The Structure of Evolutionary Theory.

English professor Heidi Scott argues that Gould's talent for writing vivid prose, his use of metaphor, and his success in building a popular audience of nonspecialist readers altered the "climate of specialized scientific discourse" favorably in his promotion of punctuated equilibrium. While Gould is celebrated for the color and energy of his prose, as well as his interdisciplinary knowledge, critics such as Scott, Richard Dawkins, and Daniel Dennett have concerns that the theory has gained undeserved credence among non-scientists because of Gould's rhetorical skills. Philosopher John Lyne and biologist Henry Howe believed punctuated equilibrium's success has much more to do with the nature of the geological record than the nature of Gould's rhetoric. They state, a "re-analysis of existing fossil data has shown, to the increasing satisfaction of the paleontological community, that Eldredge and Gould were correct in identifying periods of evolutionary stasis which are interrupted by much shorter periods of evolutionary change."

Some critics jokingly referred to the theory of punctuated equilibrium as "evolution by jerks", which reportedly prompted punctuationists to describe phyletic gradualism as "evolution by creeps."

Darwin's theory
The sudden appearance of most species in the geologic record and the lack of evidence of substantial gradual change in most species—from their initial appearance until their extinction—has long been noted, including by Charles Darwin who appealed to the imperfection of the record as the favored explanation. When presenting his ideas against the prevailing influences of catastrophism and progressive creationism, which envisaged species being supernaturally created at intervals, Darwin needed to forcefully stress the gradual nature of evolution in accordance with the gradualism promoted by his friend Charles Lyell. He privately expressed concern, noting in the margin of his 1844 Essay, "Better begin with this: If species really, after catastrophes, created in showers world over, my theory false."

It is often incorrectly assumed that he insisted that the rate of change must be constant, or nearly so, but even the first edition of On the Origin of Species states that "Species of different genera and classes have not changed at the same rate, or in the same degree. In the oldest tertiary beds a few living shells may still be found in the midst of a multitude of extinct forms... The Silurian Lingula differs but little from the living species of this genus". Lingula is among the few brachiopods surviving today but also known from fossils over 500 million years old. In the fourth edition (1866) of On the Origin of Species Darwin wrote that "the periods during which species have undergone modification, though long as measured in years, have probably been short in comparison with the periods during which they retain the same form." Thus punctuationism in general is consistent with Darwin's conception of evolution.

According to early versions of punctuated equilibrium, "peripheral isolates" are considered to be of critical importance for speciation. However, Darwin wrote, "I can by no means agree ... that immigration and isolation are necessary elements.... Although isolation is of great importance in the production of new species, on the whole I am inclined to believe that largeness of area is still more important, especially for the production of species which shall prove capable of enduring for a long period, and of spreading widely."

The importance of isolation in forming species had played a significant part in Darwin's early thinking, as shown in his Essay of 1844. But by the time he wrote the Origin he had downplayed its importance. He explained the reasons for his revised view as follows:

Throughout a great and open area, not only will there be a greater chance of favourable variations, arising from the large number of individuals of the same species there supported, but the conditions of life are much more complex from the large number of already existing species; and if some of these species become modified and improved, others will have to be improved in a corresponding degree, or they will be exterminated. Each new form, also, as soon as it has been improved, will be able to spread over the open and continuous area, and will thus come into competition with many other forms ... the new forms produced on large areas, which have already been victorious over many competitors, will be those that will spread most widely, and will give rise to the greatest number of new varieties and species. They will thus play a more important role in the changing history of the organic world.

Thus punctuated equilibrium is incongruous with some of Darwin's ideas regarding the specific mechanisms of evolution, but generally accords with Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection.

Supplemental modes of rapid evolution
Recent work in developmental biology has identified dynamical and physical mechanisms of tissue morphogenesis that may underlie abrupt morphological transitions during evolution. Consequently, consideration of mechanisms of phylogenetic change that have been found in reality to be non-gradual is increasingly common in the field of evolutionary developmental biology, particularly in studies of the origin of morphological novelty. A description of such mechanisms can be found in the multi-authored volume Origination of Organismal Form (MIT Press; 2003).
If the lack of a discernible phylogeny in the fossil record is a serious problem with the Theory of Evolution that the experts ought to be considering, shouldn't we expect the debates among experts in the field to be centered around this question? Please note, while Punctuated Equilibria is still being debated by experts in the field, none of those experts are arguing about whether the lack of a discernible phylogeny in the fossil record is a defeater for the Theory of Evolution. Is this because the consensus of experts are overlooking what you appear to believe is an obvious flaw in the Theory of Evolution or because they are doing the necessary research and experiments but have yet to find any credible evidence anywhere to suggest that the lack of a discernible phylogeny in the fossil record is an unresolvable problem?

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Re: Absurdity of evolution

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Post by Miles »

EarthScienceguy wrote: Tue Nov 09, 2021 4:00 pm How can evolution be true if phylogeny is not discernable in the fossil record?
But it is! Other than having gotten your misinformation here from mindless creationist propaganda why would you think otherwise?


Here, from the Encyclopedia Britannica.

"phylogeny, the history of the evolution of a species or group, especially in reference to lines of descent and relationships among broad groups of organisms.

Fundamental to phylogeny is the proposition, universally accepted in the scientific community, that plants or animals of different species descended from common ancestors. The evidence for such relationships, however, is nearly always incomplete, for the vast majority of species that have ever lived are extinct, and relatively few of their remains have been preserved in the fossil record. Most phylogenies therefore are hypotheses and are based on indirect evidence. Different phylogenies often emerge using the same evidence. Nevertheless, there is universal agreement that the tree of life is the result of organic descent from earlier ancestors and that true phylogenies are discoverable, at least in principle."

Evidence for specific phylogenies


Biologists who postulate phylogenies derive their most-useful evidence from the fields of paleontology, comparative anatomy, comparative embryology, and molecular genetics. Studies of the molecular structure of genes and of the geographic distribution of flora and fauna are also useful. The fossil record is often used to determine the phylogeny of groups containing hard body parts; it is also used to date divergence times of species in phylogenies that have been constructed on the basis of molecular evidence."


Image

source



Please keep in mind that creationist propaganda isn't anyone's friend. It just makes its groupies look silly



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Re: Absurdity of evolution

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Post by EarthScienceguy »

[Replying to Miles in post #6]
How can evolution be true if phylogeny is not discernable in the fossil record?
But it is!
How could it possibly be if Punctuated Equilibrium is based on the idea of speciation and that evolution happens in great leaps? Phylogeny is not possible. And far as human evolution is concerned there is simply not enough time for that to occur. Let alone any major evolutionary changes to take place like fish to human.

Neutral mutation gets rid of the idea of selection and survival of the fittest. Otherwise, the mutation would not be neutral.

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Re: Absurdity of evolution

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Post by DrNoGods »

[Replying to EarthScienceguy in post #7]
How could it possibly be if Punctuated Equilibrium is based on the idea of speciation and that evolution happens in great leaps? Phylogeny is not possible. And far as human evolution is concerned there is simply not enough time for that to occur. Let alone any major evolutionary changes to take place like fish to human.
Punctuated Equilibrium does not negate slower evolution and speciation via that mechanism. They can both exist at the same time. Look at Homo sapiens. The earliest fossil evidence found so far are the Moroccon remains at around 300,000 years old:

https://www.nature.com/articles/nature.2017.22114

The first member of the genus Homo is Homo habilis (or if you're in the camp that they should be in Pan then swap for Homo erectus). Habilis appeared around 2.4 million years ago, and had much smaller brains than we do (around 600 cc and 40 billion neurons, compared to us sapiens at 1290 cc and ~100 billion neurons). And our neocortex is far more advanced than a chimp, for example. Bipedal locomotion also provided an advantage to the new genus.

All of this evolutionary brain development and physical development happened in a very short time period (couple of million years or less), and it appears to have been a fairly steady progression during that time rather than a punctuated equilibruim situation (look at all the skulls in Miles' post 6 who participated). The "Great Leap Forward" some 50-70K years ago is a behavioral event more than a physical evolutionary event (possibly following the development of more complex language capabilities), but not all evolutionary mechanisms have to be punctuated equilibruim to the exclusion of all others as you seem to be suggesting. They can coexist.
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Re: Absurdity of evolution

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Post by Miles »

EarthScienceguy wrote: Wed Nov 10, 2021 11:28 am [Replying to Miles in post #6]
How can evolution be true if phylogeny is not discernable in the fossil record?
But it is!
How could it possibly be if Punctuated Equilibrium is based on the idea of speciation and that evolution happens in great leaps? Phylogeny is not possible. And far as human evolution is concerned there is simply not enough time for that to occur. Let alone any major evolutionary changes to take place like fish to human.

Neutral mutation gets rid of the idea of selection and survival of the fittest. Otherwise, the mutation would not be neutral.
See DrNoGods's reply above. You know, when you come across a new concept, whether it be in biology, religion, or whatever, Google can be your friend. For instance, I typed in

"punctuated equilibrium definition biology" and the very first entry was:

punc·tu·at·ed e·qui·lib·ri·um
/ˈpəNG(k)(t)SHəˌwādid ˌekwəˈlibrēəm,ˌēkwəˈlibrēəm/
Learn to pronounce
nounBiology
noun: punctuated equilibrium; plural noun: punctuated equilibria

the hypothesis that evolutionary development is marked by isolated episodes of rapid speciation between long periods of little or no change.




which tells the reader that punctuated equilibrium doesn't happen all the time, but is "isolated episodes of rapid speciation between long periods of little or no change."


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Re: Absurdity of evolution

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Post by Difflugia »

EarthScienceguy wrote: Wed Nov 10, 2021 11:28 amHow could it possibly be if Punctuated Equilibrium is based on the idea of speciation and that evolution happens in great leaps? Phylogeny is not possible.
Phylogeny is just the pattern of speciation. Whether it includes "jumps" or not, the phylogeny won't be affected. Generating a rooted phylogeny from fossil data only requires lists of morphological characters for each fossil and some method to date the fossils relative to each other.

Traditionally, the evolutionary pathways between the fossils were assumed to be gradual processes and each individual fossil was a kind of snapshot along that path. It doesn't matter if it represents a stepped evolution rather than a gradual one, however. The end result will still be the same and have exactly the same relationship to the evolutionary history of those fossils.

Your misunderstanding seems to be that the punctuations represent larger changes through time than were attributed to gradual changes. Remember that if Punctuated Equilibrium is accurate, both the punctuations and equilibria were short enough that paleontologists were still able to infer gradualism from the data. If you find two distinct morphologies that are contemporary with each other, we infer a speciation event resulting in multiple lineages. If not, then we infer a single population that changed through time. That's true whether the process was gradual or punctuated.

To be honest, it's hard to tell what you think Punctuated Equilibrium actually means. Maybe describe the process to us and it'll be easier for us to help you correct your misconceptions.
EarthScienceguy wrote: Wed Nov 10, 2021 11:28 amAnd far as human evolution is concerned there is simply not enough time for that to occur. Let alone any major evolutionary changes to take place like fish to human.
Considering the accelerating number of population and gene studies due to the ease of genetic sequencing, you should have no problem finding support for this in papers published since, say, the year 2000. Let us know when you find them. Until then, this is an unsupported assertion.
EarthScienceguy wrote: Wed Nov 10, 2021 11:28 amNeutral mutation gets rid of the idea of selection and survival of the fittest. Otherwise, the mutation would not be neutral.
That's obviously not true, so I've no idea what you think is really going on.

If we take the case of a truly neutral SNP, then there's no selection pressure either way. Eventually one or the other variant will reach fixation. The path to get there is just a bounded random walk where each boundary means 100% of one variant and 0% of the other and statistically, one or the other bound will be reached if given enough time. In the case that it was the novel SNP, we say that the result was evolution via neutral drift. In the case where the SNP is either beneficial or deleterious, it's still technically a random walk, but it's biased one way or the other by selection pressure. Genes with more than one variant in a living population are still somewhere along that random walk.

What did you think was happening instead?
My preferred pronouns are he, him, and his.

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