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Don McIntosh
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 29, 2019 5:52 pm  Why Evolutionary Theory Is Fundamentally Flawed Reply with quote

The explanatory logic of evolution, at least as it's commonly stated, fails because it assumes (wrongly) that what is true of the parts of a complex system may be validly inferred to hold for the whole as well. Thus my argument:

1. Evolution posits that the function of any complex biological system can be adequately explained as the accumulation of countless minor functional adaptations of its individual components.
2. To say that a characteristic of the whole system can be adequately explained in terms of a characteristic of its individual components is to say that a whole is equal to the sum of its parts.
3. To say that a whole is equal to the sum of its parts is to commit the fallacy of composition.
4. Evolution is a fallacy.

Note that I am not suggesting that all inferences from parts to whole fail to hold, but that the line of reasoning is fallacious on its face because in fact many such inferences do fail to hold. Given that specifiably complex biological systems are structurally heterogenous, there is no prima facie reason to think that what is true of the parts will be true of the whole. Evolution theorists therefore bear the burden of proof, namely, to explain why anyone should expect such an inference to hold in the case of specifiably complex systems.

Read the entire paper here:
https://www.academia.edu/38735629/Black_Box_Logic_Why_Evolutionary_Theory_Is_Fun...

Questions for debate: Is evolutionary theory a fallacy? If so, does that make it false?
Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 51: Mon May 06, 2019 5:27 pm
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[Replying to post 50 by EarthScienceguy]

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Do you even know how radiodating works?


I don't know how "radiodating" works because as far as I know there is no such thing. Is this a new creationist method?

I do know how radiometric dating works, however, including isochron methods. Why do you ask?

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 52: Mon May 06, 2019 5:33 pm
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Divine Insight wrote:

Don McIntosh wrote:

Quote:
Evolution has absolutely nothing at all to do with the fallacy of composition. In fact, evolution actually says quite the opposite. Evolution shows that more complex behaviors and properties can arise that were not previously possible with just the parts alone. So evolution is saying just the opposite of the fallacy of composition.

What a terrible argument. When you say that on evolution various things "can arise that were not previously possible with just the parts alone," you merely confirm that whole systems are often more than the sum of their parts, which is just what I have been saying.


They are not more than the sum of their parts. They simply have properties that none of their parts alone could possess alone. This is a well-know fact of the nature of all the elements.

LOL. So what do think I meant by "more than the sum of their parts," if not something very much like, "having properties that none of their parts could possess alone"?

And at issue here is not whether organisms or other entities (like elements) simply have various such properties; it is whether natural selection is a good explanation for the particular property of specifiable complexity, i.e. a system whose complexity specifies a function (like vision). My argument demonstrates that natural selection is not a good explanation because it is logically fallacious.


Quote:
Don McIntosh wrote:

But you fail to supply any sort of valid evolutionary explanation for the construction of specifiably complex systems, while my argument is that the evolutionary explanation for those systems is fallacious. Evidently there is more to those systems than the simple accumulation of so many selectively advantageous mutations.


Your argument is simple wrong. It's clearly based on an ignorance of what the theory of evolution actually has to say.

So you have asserted repeatedly. But this is a debate forum; you need arguments and evidence to back up your repeated assertions.

You have to understand that the whole "you don't understand evolution" line has become much like accusing political opponents of racism: it's an entirely predictable canard that has lost any rhetorical force it may have ever had. It gets trotted out every single time anyone expresses doubts about evolution, and quite regardless of their reasons. Far as I can tell the reasoning, if we could call it that, behind this tired old charge runs as follows:

1. To understand evolution is to believe that evolution is true.
2. You do not believe that evolution is true.
3. You do not understand evolution.

Of course, I could reply just as easily:

1. To understand evolution is to realize that evolution is a fallacy.
2. You do not realize that evolution is a fallacy.
3. You do not understand evolution.


Quote:
Also the Theory of Evolution (which is just an explanation for how evolution actually occurs) never suggests that it was a predetermined goal of evolution to create an specific complex system. To the contrary, it simple states that complex systems that do arise and contribute to their own survival will survive. Period.

Sorry, but red herrings don't gain logical strength by stating "Period" at the end of them. I have never suggested that evolution posits a predetermined goal. I have suggested and continue to suggest, however, that natural selection is a poor, indeed transparently fallacious, explanation for the construction of specifiably complex systems.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 53: Mon May 06, 2019 5:49 pm
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Are you sure you know about whale evolution?

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 54: Mon May 06, 2019 6:23 pm
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[Replying to post 53 by EarthScienceguy]

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Are you sure you know about whale evolution?


I think it is safe to say that the people and/or organizations who prepared the information in the links I sent, and the references in those links, know far more about whale evolution than you or I do. The current best explanation is that whales evolved from a land animal, as described in those links and many others like them. Do you have any legitimate science references that show otherwise, or can you only regurgitate what you read on creationist's (ie. nonscience) websites?

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 55: Mon May 06, 2019 7:38 pm
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DrNoGods wrote:


But you did make the analogy that ToE is like a card factory exploding and forming a card mansion. That is definitively not how evolution works so I think I'm correct in saying that this kind of analogy demonstrates a fundamental misunderstanding of how evolution by natural selection actually does work.


Your name is "DrNoGods", correct? Doesn't this mean that you don't believe that God exists? Well, based on that belief, I have no choice but to consider the totality of your belief, which is that life arose from nonliving material and eventually found itself evolving into more complex material.

That is what it all boils down to when you take away the fluff and the feathers. I understand that evolutionists would like to just ignore things like abiogenesis and such, and just jump right into evolution...

But if abiogenesis is false, there is no way macroevolution is true (without God).

DrNoGods wrote:

It is not a situation where random mutations and other DNA changes happen and somehow a complex biological organism appears purely from that process and nothing else. Natural selection works against these DNA changes to "select" those that are beneficial and weed out those that are not (because that organism can't reproduce at sufficient rates, or at all).


Right, you just said it; natural selection selects. It does not create. Natural selection is like a quality control system...it selects what it can use, the good stuff.

If you work in the quality control department at a car manufacturing plant, and your job is to weave out the good parts from the bad parts (loose analogy)...as you weave out the bad parts, how long will it take for this process to "turn" this car into a Boeing 757?

It ain't happening.

DrNoGods wrote:

Your card factory explosion example has no function like natural selection


For natural selection to even work, life has to already exist. If you take God out of the equation (which you do), then you have to prove how life originated before you begin to think about how life evolved.

DrNoGods wrote:

... it suggests that a large number of cards randomly fell to Earth from the explosion and a card mansion appeared. That is not a correct analogy to ToE.


Evolution without God is dependent upon abiogenesis, and abiogenesis is dependent upon a universe originating. Unless you have a viable theory as to how life originated, you have no viable theory as to how life evolved.

DrNoGods wrote:


Yes ... I was inundated with Christianity from birth until 18, but eventually decided to study the different religions of the world in my early 20s and realized that the entire premise upon which most of them are based (ie. the existence of one or more gods) was flawed as there is no evidence of any kind that such beings exist now or did in the past. So, unlike ToE where there is physical evidence that it is valid (including what you could call "macro" evolution), there is no evidence that any god or gods exist.


Well, you don't find the evidence for my religion convincing, and I don't find the evidence for your religion convincing.

No robbery/fair exchange.

DrNoGods wrote:

That is the difference. ToE can be believed because there is solid and copious evidence for it.


I feel the same about Christianity. Solid and copious evidence for it.

DrNoGods wrote:

Not so for any god that humans have invented over the millennia.


And I feel that the idea that a reptile evolved into a bird was invented over the last 200 years.

DrNoGods wrote:


Well, that's better than the young earth creationists here. But given that we have mountains of physical evidence, including genetics evidence, supporting ToE including "macro" evolution (eg. fish to amphibians, apes to humans), and zero evidence supporting the existence of gods or humans having afterlives (unless you have something new), I'd argue that your position is the one based purely on speculation (ie. that a god exists) rather than mine.


If there is evidence for macroevolution, I haven't seen it yet.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 56: Mon May 06, 2019 8:39 pm
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[Replying to post 55 by For_The_Kingdom]

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I have no choice but to consider the totality of your belief, which is that life arose from nonliving material and eventually found itself evolving into more complex material.


Yes ... I believe that is how it happened. We don't yet know the detailed mechanism for how this happened, but whatever the mechanism it is a more rational idea than that some god which has never been seen, heard, or demonstrated to exist in any form, at any time in history, simply created life by magic.

Quote:
I understand that evolutionists would like to just ignore things like abiogenesis and such, and just jump right into evolution...


Because abiogenesis, panspermia, or other hypotheses for the origin of life are completely separate subjects from ToE. ToE only describes how life diversified once it did exist, but makes no statements on HOW life came to exist. It could be a god creation event, and ToE is fine with that. Obviously life did have to come about by some means for evolution to then have material to work with, but the mechanism for origin of life has nothing to do with ToE, by definition. You can't tie them together arbitrarily because it may help an argument that ToE is invalid because it doesn't explain the origin of life on Earth.

Quote:
For natural selection to even work, life has to already exist. If you take God out of the equation (which you do), then you have to prove how life originated before you begin to think about how life evolved.


Agreed. Life has to exist before evolution can work. Evolution just says nothing about HOW life came to exist. But just because we don't yet know the detailed mechanism for how life first came into existence on this planet doesn't mean that a god did it. That isn't the default alternative. To use your same argument, you have to prove that a creating god exists in the first place before you can claim it created life (or anything else). Prior to the development of modern science ... anything that wasn't understood was attributed to the actions of a deity (earthquakes, famine, etc.). It made sense 2000 years ago. It doesn't make sense now. "God did it" is not the default answer if science doesn't yet know.

Quote:
Unless you have a viable theory as to how life originated, you have no viable theory as to how life evolved.


Nope. Another attempt to try and tie evolution to the mechanism for how life arose. They are absolutely independent. You can have a theory for how life evolved (and we do ... ToE) completely independent of the mechanism for how life arose in the first place. If I give you a creating god to start things off, ToE doesn't change. If it is a panspermia event, ToE doesn't change. But you seem to accept ToE to a point ... "microevolution" ... you just don't want to accept the next step that many microevolution events can lead to a "macroevolution" event. And that transition requires no explanation for HOW life arose in the first place.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 57: Tue May 07, 2019 10:31 am
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For_The_Kingdom wrote:

DrNoGods wrote:

It is not a situation where random mutations and other DNA changes happen and somehow a complex biological organism appears purely from that process and nothing else. Natural selection works against these DNA changes to "select" those that are beneficial and weed out those that are not (because that organism can't reproduce at sufficient rates, or at all).


Right, you just said it; natural selection selects. It does not create. Natural selection is like a quality control system...it selects what it can use, the good stuff.

If you work in the quality control department at a car manufacturing plant, and your job is to weave out the good parts from the bad parts (loose analogy)...as you weave out the bad parts, how long will it take for this process to "turn" this car into a Boeing 757?

It ain't happening.

Agreed.

I like your "quality control" analogy for natural selection. I drew a similar conclusion, that functional novelty will never arise apart from intentional creative activity, using a similar analogy a few years back:

'No matter how we slice it, evolution remains an inadequate explanation for the origin of specifiable complexity. A novel yet functional biological system cannot be expected to arise unaided from innumerable alleged natural selection events, any more than a working intergalactic spacecraft can be expected to arise from extended production runs at a Boeing plant with no direction from managers or input from engineers. As quality managers like W. Edwards Deming have observed, the only new thing to emerge from an undirected repetitive manufacturing process would be ever-increasing nonconformance to the very specifications necessary for the product to survive in a competitive marketplace. In this and other ways evolution flies in the face not only of sound reasoning but of our common sense experiences.'

For anyone who might be interested, that's from my best-selling (hahahahaha) book, Transcending Proof:
https://www.amazon.com/Transcending-Proof-Defense-Christian-Theism/dp/1537014323

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 58: Tue May 07, 2019 1:24 pm
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[Replying to post 57 by Don McIntosh]

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I drew a similar conclusion, that functional novelty will never arise apart from intentional creative activity


The part the quality control analogy leaves out is the possibility for mutations and other DNA changes that do, in fact, create something new that natural selection can work against. The quality control manager at a car factory weeding out bad parts is only part of how natural selection works, and obviously that process could never result in an aircraft just like the card factory explosion could never produce a card mansion.

You guys are leaving out a crucial part of the process (ie. the possibility for new functions and structures) and then claiming it can't lead to complexity in biological organisms. The DNA changes may be a mixing of already existing base pair sequences (substitutions, insertions, deletions, duplications, etc.). But this can produce new functions and structures that this quality control manager analogy misses completely. So it isn't a correct analogy.

Another misleading comment is that natural selection "can only select from what is already there." What is already there are the components and mechanisms to build just about anything imaginable as far as a biological organism (ie. DNA). Changes to this material can create something new just like a cupboard full of foodstuffs can create new and very different dishes depending on how they are combined together. Natural selection will weed out the bad parts and allow the good parts to pass down the line, but it works against DNA changes that can create new things that didn't exist before (albeit from existing material ... DNA and how it works in living organisms). The car factory cannot do this so the QA manager could never select for the wings that could eventually lead to an airplane, as wings could never reach his station.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 59: Tue May 07, 2019 2:22 pm
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[Replying to post 51 by DrNoGods]

Ok, here we go then.

Since already know about isochrons you are aware of how the dates arrived at.
How it takes 1 sample of radioactive material which we can call p, 1 sample daughter element which we can call d and a one sample of a different isotope of the daughter element which we can call n. Now the equation that is used is

log F = N/F log 1/2

F = fraction remaining
N = number of years
H = 1/2 life

To obtain F (fraction remaining) the isochron method is used which uses the slope of the line p/n to d/n. Now p/n to d/n has to produce a positive slope otherwise the sample is discarded.

It is at this point that we run into the first problem. The fractional amounts that are being dealt with are so small that a relatively small slope produces a large date. Like for example

Using the Rb/Sr the slope of Sr-87/Sr-86 vs. Rb-87/Sr-86 yields a slope of .048.

If section of a rock is examined and it does not have p/n to d/n does not have a slope then the rock is regarded as being contaminated. So the only way a date will be used is if the p/n to d/n has a slope which means a predetermination of age.

Below are dates of the actual lava flows and the dates prescribed to them by K-Ar dating.

Akka Water Fall flow, Hawaii (Pleistocene) 32.3±7.2 Ma125
Kilauea Iki basalt, Hawaii (AD 1959) 8.5±6.8 Ma126
Mt. Stromboli, Italy, volcanic bomb (September 23, 1963) 2.4±2 Ma127
Mt. Etna basalt, Sicily (May 1964) 0.7±0.01 Ma128
Medicine Lake Highlands obsidian, Glass Mountains, California (<500 years old) 12.6±4.5 Ma129
Hualalai basalt, Hawaii (AD 1800–1801) 22.8±16.5 Ma130
Rangitoto basalt, Auckland, New Zealand (<800 years old) 0.15±0.47 Ma131
Alkali basalt plug, Benue, Nigeria (<30 Ma) 95 Ma132
Olivine basalt, Nathan Hills, Victoria Land, Antarctica (<0.3 Ma) 18.0±0.7 Ma133
Anorthoclase in volcanic bomb, Mt. Erebus, Antarctica (1984) 0.64±0.03 Ma134
Kilauea basalt, Hawaii (<200 years old) 21±8 Ma135
Kilauea basalt, Hawaii (<1000 years old) 42.9±4.2 Ma136
30.3±3.3 Ma137
East Pacific Rise basalt (<1 Ma) 690±7 Ma138
Seamount basalt, near East Pacific Rise (<2.5 Ma) 580±10 Ma139
700±150 Ma140
East Pacific Rise basalt (<0.6 Ma) 24.2±1.0 Ma141

There was even one C14 date that was dated 3000 years in the future.
https://creation.com/images/feedback/2007/5026-BGS43.jpg

The second problem explains all the incorrect dates of Ar-Ar dates above.

The Ar/Ar dates are supposed to be very accurate because the Ar is an inert gas that that will escapes until the rock solidifies. Once the magma solidifies the argon is thought to be trapped inside the rock. But as evidenced above not all of the light argon in the rock is removed in the molten state.

Third, there is evidence of diffusion of elements. Robert B. Hayes, “Some Mathematical and Geophysical Considerations in Radioisotope Dating Applications,” Nuclear Technology 197 (2017): 209-218

Fourth a uniform mixing of different isotopes is not possible because of the different melting point, solubilities, densities, reactivities are bound to produce points of higher and lower concentrations of parent and daughter elements.

This is what you are putting your faith in for long ages. A system that at its very core assumes long ages.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 60: Tue May 07, 2019 4:25 pm
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[Replying to post 49 by DrNoGods]

WOW!! those are some really great stories of whale evolution but they just don't match up to the facts.

Pakicetus

An incomplete skull fossil was imagined to be that of a whale-like creature, displayed as an artist’s impression on the cover of the prestigious journal, Science, in 1983. Some years later the rest of Pakicetus was found, published in 2001, and it proved to be nothing like a whale. Contrary to what Dr Gingerich had imagined, there was no blowhole, there were no flippers (only hooves), and there was no whale neck (just a neck typical for land mammals). Even so, Dr Werner reveals that the American Museum of Natural History in New York and the Natural History Museum in London have not stopped using the falsely-reconstructed skull that shows a blowhole.

In a National Geographic documentary in 2009, Dr Gingerich still claimed that Pakicetus should be classed with whales, based on its ear-bone. However, the ear-bone is not like a whale, which has a finger-like projection (sigmoid process), but is plate-like, like the fossils of land animals known as artiodactyls.

Ambulocetus
The ‘walking whale’ is portrayed as an intermediate between Pakicetus and Rodhocetus. Dr Hans Thewissen, former student of Dr Gingerich, said that there were eight characteristics that showed that Ambulocetus was a whale ancestor. We have also reported on Ambulocetus, but Dr Werner recorded on video Dr Thewissen admitting that a key evidence of whale ancestry, the sigmoid process of the ear-bone apparatus, was actually nothing like a whale ear bone. Also, the cheek bone, which Thewissen claimed is thin like a whale cheek bone, is actually not thin at all; a horse, for example, has a much thinner cheekbone than Ambulocetus.

Dr Werner says, ‘All eight characters he reported as whale features are disturbingly non-whale features.’ Furthermore, Dr Thewissen’s lab has supplied models of Ambulocetus to various museums that show a blowhole in the snout of the skull, but there is no fossil evidence of a blowhole. Dr Werner says, “All eight characters he reported as whale features are disturbingly non-whale features.”


Rodhocetus
Rodhocetus was claimed to be an aquatic animal that was developing front flippers and a whale-like tail with flukes (horizontal fins)—i.e. supposedly well on the way to becoming a whale. However, when Dr Werner pointed out to the paleontologist who discovered Rodhocetus, Dr Gingerich, that there was no fossil skeletal evidence for a tail or flippers, Dr Gingerich admitted that this was so. He also admitted that he now thought that the creature had neither of these critical whale features. However, the tail and flippers are still displayed in many articles, and I expect that, like Haeckel’s artistic embryos, will be for many years to come.

So much for whale evolution.

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