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Answering The Gullible

[Note: If you comment or trackback and you misquote me or it is clear you did not read this (and think about my point) you will be deleted. I'm tired of the wingnuts.]

I left the computer yesterday after I stirred up the Evolutionary Zealots and I missed the brain implosion. When I got back on the computer, it was amazing to see, frankly, how these people became walking talking caricatures of themselves.

Even after I mocked them they didn't get that they were the butt of a cruel joke. They are so predictable in their zealotry. I often say that the "oozers" are more religiously fanatic than the religious people. They continue to prove it.

But to get to the point. The Commissar (of all people) called me a flat earther and asked me two questions.

I never avoid a question so let's go.

I have two questions for Paul:

1) Are the millions of fossils in museums and universities real or frauds? Not their age, just their provenance. Were they dug out of the earth honestly; are they the remains of creature now extinct? Or are they frauds and fakes?

This is where I just scratch my head. The "oozers" want us to believe (as a matter of religious doctrine) that lightning hit inorganic primordial ooze and it became life. From that humble beginning all life on earth evolved. I've written this many times on Wizbang but....

Where in there exactly did I imply that fossils in museums were fake? He may as well ask me my favorite color. It is a completely disjointed question that bears no relevance to the discussion. But for the record, no I never said they were fake and I do not believe that they are.

Now, how exactly does that prove all life came from ooze?

2) If you accept the fossils as real, do you believe that the diversity and change represented in them was accomplished A) unaided and strictly by genetic change, or B) guided by a higher power, either through Intelligent Design or by instantaneous Creation?...

What do YOU believe, Paul?

Lemme type it REAL slow.

I don't believe either. (Is that so hard to wrap your brain around?)

To believe A, you have to believe a whole string of improbable events happened -- all in a row. (to digress a bit) It is sort of like believing that Hillary really did turn 1000 bucks in 100,000 in the cattle futures market honestly... Sure she could have done it (mathematically) but she also could have gotten the right number on a roulette table 15 times in row. I'm just not buying it.

There are massive gaping holes in the whole theory. Massive. (google is your friend)

But what annoys me the most, and why I make fun of them, is that to the zealots, saying you don't believe a flawed theory is heresy. I might be actually thinking for myself and not repeating "The Gospel According to Oozer" (hey i like that) and we can't have any of that.

And they are sooo intellectually dishonest. Not a one of them will actually say:

"You're right Paul. There are some major holes in the theory. BUT it is the best theory we have today. History may prove us to be fools, but for today I believe it is the most probable way to answer all the questions surrounding the diversity of life on earth. But I do understand that there are enough problems still in the theory that you are not convinced yet."
Is it that hard?

Instead they resort to insulting their critics and lecturing people that THEY are scientists... Bull Shit. A scientist who does not admit he might potentially be wrong is really a theologian.

You zealots can choose to believe a (presently) flawed theory. Hip hip hooray for you. But my skepticism (believe it or not) is based on the quality of the theory and is not a sign of lower intelligence or life form. (pun intended)



Now if you believe B, you believe something with a strong historical record but quite short on scientific data. Like believing A, you have taken a leap of faith... The difference of course being that you will admit it.

The EZ's love to say that their theory elegantly explains the diversity of life. I hate to point out their denial of reality, but there is no more elegant theory than "God made it that way." If we are scoring on elegance, religion wins... by definition.

So Commissar... that's what I believe.

Update The religious Zealots have a new tactic. I expose it below the fold.

Confronted with the fact that they are religious fanatics they are using the "Paul is confusing evolution with abiogenesis" line which Steve still can't spell even though I've corrected him 3 times.

I'll clip Jeff Harrell In The Commissar's comments.

The theory of evolution basically comes in two parts. First is the part that says that species change over time due to things like environmental pressures and just plain ol' random mutations. Nobody can argue that this isn't true. My ex-girlfriend was born without wisdom-tooth buds. Pure mutation. Will it be passed down to her kids? Don't know. But that's just an example. The fact that organisms change over generations is undeniably true.

The other part of the theory says that organisms change into significantly different organisms over time. Fish evolve into lizards, dinosaurs evolve into birds, shrews evolve into you and me. That's the part that's never been observed. There appears to be a sort of succession of life in the fossil record, but it's got massive gaps in it that we have yet to explain. One explanation might be that evolution in punctuated. Another explanation is that it basically doesn't happen at all, at least not in the way that's been theorized.

The first half of the theory is pretty much indisputable, I think. The second half - who knows? There are just too many gaps in our knowledge to come anywhere close to thinking that we can explain the diversity of life.

An important part of the scientific method is recognizing the limits of what we know. When somebody recognizes the limits of what we know about the history of life, it doesn't necessarily mean he's a creationist, or an anti-evolutionist, or any type of "ist" at all. Except possibly "scientist."

Jeff mostly gets it right There are really 3 parts.

1) Lightning hits ooze and it becomes life. (yes Steve that is spelled, abiogenesis)

2) Life changes over time (proper definition of Evolution)

3) Life evolves enough to explain all the diversity of life including man. (oozer theory)
------------------
#1 Is a tough sell scientifically.

#2 is Pretty Solid

#3 Is (scientifically) near laughable. (today)

But I'll use this to show the disingenuous of the Zealots. Their argument goes like this:

Zealot: You know Evolution exists. (#2)

Sane Person: Yeah but parts 1 and 3 are quite flawed.

Zealot: You idiot, you don't understand the difference between 1 and 2.

Thereby changing the subject away from the flawed theories. Great way to make a scientific point.


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Comments (144)

I smell a Pulitzer Prize fo... (Below threshold)
Neal:

I smell a Pulitzer Prize for Paul.

No, Paul, they'll just bran... (Below threshold)
andy:

No, Paul, they'll just brand you as someone who doesn't understand evolution, which should have become plainly clear when you erected your strawman definition of it to knock down.

As I said before, talking about evolution (by your definition) in light of an article that talks about evolution (using an accurate definition) is - well - pretty silly and pointless. You might as well respond to an article about dogs by talking about how wonderful kitty cats are.

Your continued defense of your indefensible argument is what is truly most sad and amusing.

But, hey, it's been fun. Next week I think I'll go fishing with hand grenades.

Paul-What specific... (Below threshold)
Curtis:

Paul-

What specific holes in the theory do you have issues with?

(I read your article, and I understand that I could google to find the holes, but I am more interested in your specific views)

Paul: about this, I wholeh... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Paul: about this, I wholeheartedly agree, about the evolutionary zealots:

"...Instead they resort to insulting their critics and lecturing people that THEY are scientists... Bull Shit. A scientist who does not admit he might potentially be wrong is really a theologian."


You can even agree that you accept academically the process of evolution and still they'll rail against the "stupidity" and such (good enough recapulization of what's been written so far about some of us).

Unfortunately, anyone so brittle to anything new, so intolerant about ideas and inspirations, even about creative concepts and conceptualizations as do most who appear to cling to their place of power (supposedly, at least that's the impression I get mostly when the rants begin), anyone so UNaware of alternatives and possibilities is, in fact, the actual zealot. And the religion of evolution teeters on.

It's not a failed field of study but that many attracted to it and who loiter there are failed as productive individuals within any conversation. Too accustomed to the lecture format, I'm thinking, too intolerant of tangents and suggestions, far too emotionally focused on what might otherwise be a nice opportunity to explore ideas.

Biology is not a closed fie... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Biology is not a closed field of study. All and any aspects of biology are based upon the process of development to one degree or another. It seems that it, unfortunately, attracts some people who are inflexible in their personalities. I've known (well) many with Ph.D.s in some area of physical science, and many more with M.D.'s in same, and the worst practitioners are always those focus on absence and limits and limitations -- but it's not a failure of the science so much as it is human failing hiding behind self importance. It's the "I'm learned and you aren't" perspective that actually evidences that they don't know what "learned" actually means.

I'm puzzled as to why there is the proliferation of prejudice, however, as to anyone who poses alternatives to evolution as fixed understanding. And the many exaggerations about those by persons who otherwise pride themselves in all their academia.

Thank you Andy for proving ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Thank you Andy for proving my point. Again.

You can't even bring yourself to admit there is a chance that the present theories are wrong.

But you're not a religious zealot... Nope.

I read one EZ the other day... (Below threshold)

I read one EZ the other day mention that as an engineer, he would rather create a system that designs itself like evolution so he woudn't have to paint stripes on zebras 24/7. Well He did that, He wrote the most complicated biological software program every created called DNA. It's a multilayered, self replicating system that merely needs to be set in motion. The code is designed to work within the biological system of earth so all He had to do was make minor adjustments to differentiate species. Sure there's survival of the fittest and all that, but not blob, fish, lizard, bird, hamster, monkey, man.

Froggy- Thats exactly why I... (Below threshold)
Curtis:

Froggy- Thats exactly why I don't see why its necessary to say there is either evolution or god. Going on Paul's obsession with ooze, lets paraphrase Genesis: God created ooze, from which came man in His image.

Dear Sir,I remember ... (Below threshold)
Jerry:

Dear Sir,
I remember growing up and my saintly mother saying that God created man in a day. She said that didn't mean 24hours. She also told me that when we die it is ashes to ashes and dust to dust. She would then chuckle as she cleaned house saying that some one must be going or coming on this table top. As I grew older we learned that we all evolved from Apes. That concerned me because I could never figure out "Why are there still Apes?" Now oozeration, what would my mother say. "Son, I am not sure on this one but if its true don't clean up that mess in your bedroom". I guess finally after all these years one must believe that there are somethings we will never understand. Thanks Mom for the lesson.

Paul pretty soon will come ... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

Paul pretty soon will come the patronizing comments on how you just don't understand (actually those have probably already occured, they just come in greater numbers).

And I agree with you that the only difference between an evolution zealot and somebody who believes there is some other power greater than us that is behind it (intellgient design etc) is that the latter will admit there is an element of faith to what they believe.

There is far more about nature that we don't know than what we know, and each time we think we have found all the scientific answers, we uncover a whole new layer of stuff we don't have a clue on.

I will just continue to believe that God did it.

For someone who claims to u... (Below threshold)
Woody:

For someone who claims to understand the TOE you sure made an odd mistake. Evolution say nothing about " all life came from ooze", that would be abiogenesis. Evolution is the theory of how life progressed after that point. While amiogenesis and evolution are related they are not the same thing.

Frankly, I cannot understan... (Below threshold)
DLD:

Frankly, I cannot understand why evolution and intelligent design, by necessity, mutually exclusive concepts in many peoples' minds. If there is not some "design", constraint, rules, whatever inherent in the behavior of biological processes, then the processes are random. One is hard placed to come up with naturally processes that are truly random. So, if there are rules, contraints inherent in the behavior of biological systems then in my mind there is design present. Toss out the term intelligent if it is hang up for you, but I think too many people have a too narrow view of the term intelligent. Froggy implies this in his post. The designed process called DNA is set in motion. It follows the rules or code so to speak. The result up to this point is what you see today extant on earth.

Posted by: Mac Lorry</b... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Posted by: Mac Lorry

Evolution is hard ground to plow in either direction. If Evolution could actually be proven, it would devastate theologies that teach life was created by God. If Creation could actually be proven, it would devastate the underpinnings of life sciences and the atheism it often spawns.

Most individuals have a large stake in their positions when discussing evolution, and in that environment, it's difficult for anyone to concede points to the other side. I'm not convinced that any framework could be devised that would allow any useful public discussion of evolution and creation to occur. Of course, that's just my theory.

Paul - Might the present th... (Below threshold)
andy:

Paul - Might the present theories be wrong? Sure, I suppose there's a chance we might find a fully formed human fossil in a stratum that is twenty million years old, but I wouldn't bet on it.

All it will take is one unpredicted, confirmed anamoly to show that our understanding is wrong. Over the last 150 years, though, the theory of evolution has only gained additional support from the sciences.

There I've admitted that theories can be wrong. Now you admit that your made up definition of evolution had nothing to do with reality or the article in question.

There is a big difference b... (Below threshold)
Alex:

There is a big difference between criticisms founded in detailed knowledge of the field in question and criticisms founded in stereotype and hearsay. As a professional biologist, it's pretty clear to me that Paul's statements are in the latter category.

I'll be open-minded toward's Paul's position once Paul shows that he is open-minded enough about mine to actually read some of the science involved. I'd recommend, for starters, Coyne and Orr's recent book on speciation research:

(http://www.sinauer.com/detail.php?id=0914)

Why should I take seriously criticisms from a guy who quite plainly has not a ghost of a clue of what I do in my research or how I do it?

Froggy --"I read o... (Below threshold)
Master of None:

Froggy --

"I read one EZ the other day mention that as an engineer, he would rather create a system that designs itself like evolution so he woudn't have to paint stripes on zebras 24/7."

I was the guy who posted that. My point was that if God created by painting stripes or created by using the process of evolution, it was none the less God's creation. I don't think I deserve the title of EZ. I'm certainly not a young earth believer, but I do believe that God is the creator.

WOW Andy, I can't believe y... (Below threshold)
Paul:

WOW Andy, I can't believe you said this"

"All it will take is one unpredicted, confirmed anamoly to show that our understanding is wrong"

You're right! And you just proved the ooze theory to be bunk.

Congrats

"I never avoid a question."... (Below threshold)

"I never avoid a question."

You just did. My question B was "either/or" and was addressed to your beliefs. It's binary. "Neither" is not an option. Perhaps you meant "I don't know; I can't choose between them."

But one of them had to happen, i.e. God intervened or He didn't. (If He intervened just a little bit, or indirectly, or thru spiritual actuation, etc., then He intervened.)

If you claim that you "don't know," then we can continue.

I never said the "ooze" the... (Below threshold)
andy:

I never said the "ooze" theory was right or a reflection of current understanding.

Do you make a habit of challenging outdated ideas?

Next on Wizbang: Paul takes on epilepsy as demonic possession!

Be careful though - he might define "epilepsy" as "a moist, delicious chocolate cake" and the debate will go nowhere.

"Why should I take seriousl... (Below threshold)
Paul:

"Why should I take seriously criticisms from a guy who quite plainly has not a ghost of a clue of what I do in my research or how I do it?"

Well now Alex, do share.... What "research" do you do?

Got any proof in your pocket?

No, didn't think you.

sigh"You just d... (Below threshold)
Paul:

sigh

"You just did. My question B was "either/or" and was addressed to your beliefs. It's binary. "Neither" is not an option. Perhaps you meant "I don't know; I can't choose between them."


OH the old "Did you stop beating your wife yet?" question.

Grow up.

By definition the Biologist... (Below threshold)

By definition the Biologist is at a distinct disadvantage when discussing origins of anything. Biology and it's related science have information or practices that deal with existance.

The greatest treat, I believe, is for a scientist to argue about a change that occured on an object created (came into existance) billions of years before.

The religious can always point to God creating the universe and therefor all that follows owes some credit to God. Unfortunately science can not explain the existance of all material in the universe coming into existance from nothing at a distinct point in time.

In an open universe all material would have slowed and came to a standstill after a set amount of time following the big bang. Because our universe is expanding either A)Time began at a specified time or B)open universe theory is flawed.

In a closed universe (the beliefe that the universe expands and contracts infinately) the loss of even miniscule energy in the form of radiation and light traveling outwards would eventually drain the universe of the energy needed to contract and (like an open universe) everything would come to a standstill. The flaws closely mirror the open universe. Because our universe is expanding either A)Time began at a specified time or B)Closed universe theory is flawed.

The final point is that the only way to discount God is to state that Time started at a distinct point and everything in the universe came into existance spontaniously. Or to state it in other words...

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth, and the earth was without form and void....

DEEP DEEP thinking! Just wo... (Below threshold)
jhow66:

DEEP DEEP thinking! Just wonder if aqnyone was around when all this was happening?`Could they prove it one way or the other? Will it ever be anymore then a theory?

It's an either/or question.... (Below threshold)

It's an either/or question.

God was involved, or HE wasn't.

Your "I'll type real slow ... grow up ... Is that so hard" comments are unhelpful. If you want a civil debate, we can have it. Otherwise, write whatever you want on your site.

Paul, you're unbelievably d... (Below threshold)

Paul, you're unbelievably dishonest. You have not once acknowledged that the theory of abiogenesis is completely, utterly, and totally different from the theory of evolution. You keep harping on "primordial ooze" as if it has anything to do with the mechanism of evolution. It doesn't. You're wrong.

Second, there have been many, many documented instances of speciation...what most anti-evolutionists mistakenly refer to as "macroevolution." In truth, micro- and macroevolution are the same thing, and this false dichotomy is yet another manifestation of "the God of the Gaps." Anyhow, that you still doubt tells me that you have never really read the Talkorigins page that has been linked to for your edification many times.

I'll try again: http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-speciation.html

Note in particular the entries such as this: "The Russian cytologist Karpchenko (1927, 1928) crossed the radish, Raphanus sativus, with the cabbage, Brassica oleracea. Despite the fact that the plants were in different genera, he got a sterile hybrid. Some unreduced gametes were formed in the hybrids. This allowed for the production of seed. Plants grown from the seeds were interfertile with each other. They were not interfertile with either parental species. Unfortunately the new plant (genus Raphanobrassica) had the foliage of a radish and the root of a cabbage."

Note the high points. Two species interbred. This produced a hybrid. Unreduced gametes allowed for seed. New species can interbreed with each other, but not the parent species. What, exactly, is giving you trouble about this?

>It's an either/or question... (Below threshold)
Paul:

>It's an either/or question.

OK Commissar, is the moon made of butter milk or cream cheese?

It's an either or question.

Sorry if me telling you to grow up is offensive but when you ask a question like that, I'm not sure how you expect me to answer.

You tell me that I have to believe either A or B.

OK is the moon made of butter milk or cream cheese?

You don't see the problem with your question?

"Will it ever be anymore th... (Below threshold)

"Will it ever be anymore then a theory?"

You have no idea what the term "theory" means in a scientific sense, do you? Hint: It does NOT mean "guess."

Let me try this again:... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Let me try this again:

Commissar you asked: "Do you believe A or B?"

I answered (and I quote): "I don't believe either. (Is that so hard to wrap your brain around?)"

It's funny I asked that parenthetical question. Apparently it is hard for you to wrap your brain around.

I answered it... You just didn't like the answer.

The composition of the Moon... (Below threshold)

The composition of the Moon (butter or cheese) is NOT a comparable question.

God aided the diversity of life on earth, OR He did not.

The Moon is composed of dairy products, OR it is not.

You might claim that you dont have information to answer, i.e. that you don't know. "Neither" is not an option.

OH OK - Now you are asking ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

OH OK - Now you are asking a different question. Now you are asking "Do you believe B or don't you."

I answer that question.

BTW Read Jeff in your comme... (Below threshold)
Paul:

BTW Read Jeff in your comments, he hits it out the park

"I answer that question"... (Below threshold)

"I answer that question"

Where?

Paul, this is my last attempt to discuss this in good faith.

Do you believe that the diversity of life on earth was aided by God or not?

"I don't believe that it was either aided or unaided." is not a useful answer.

P.S. I still accept "I don'... (Below threshold)

P.S. I still accept "I don't know," but you havent said that. You insist on "neither."

This is getting funny:... (Below threshold)
Paul:

This is getting funny:

The Commissar: Do you believe A or B?

Paul: Neither

The Commissar: Do you believe B?

Paul: I answered that.

The Commissar: No you didn't.

Paul: Sigh

You still haven't tried to ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

You still haven't tried to discuss it in good faith. You call me a flat earther but you get offended when I tell you I'll type slow.

Then, rather than discuss the merits of my reply, you play word games.

Do you believe that the div... (Below threshold)

Do you believe that the diversity of life on Earth was aided by God or not?

Well, Commissar, all I know... (Below threshold)
andy:

Well, Commissar, all I know is that the Bible says that giant space robots came down to Earth and made everything with their ancient magical pixie-powder.*

* The nomenclature will get you everytime. I'm not talking about "the Bible" in the strict sense. I'm talking about "the Bible" in the sense of "a story I heard from my 8 year old nephew."

P.S. Still waiting for Paul to admit his definition of evolution was bunk.

The Commissar: Do you belie... (Below threshold)
Paul:

The Commissar: Do you believe A or B?

Paul: Neither

The Commissar: Do you believe B?

Paul: I answered that.

The Commissar: No you didn't.

Paul: Sigh

The Commissar: Do you believe B?

Paul: I wonder how long before he clicks this link.

Q: Do you believe the Moon ... (Below threshold)

Q: Do you believe the Moon is made of dairy products, or not?

A: Neither.

Your ignorance is not an in... (Below threshold)

Your ignorance is not an indictment of modern biology.

You claim that no one will admit to problems in evolutionary theory. This is a lie; I will be charitable and assume it is a lie based on your profound absence of information on what biologists actually say, rather than malice. But, for instance, one of the early posts on my weblog was a summary of deficiencies in evolutionary theory, which was simply a compilation of ideas from several readily available, public writings by evolutionary biologists.

There is no reticence among biologists to list problems. After all, that's what we do for a living: chase down and try to answer big questions in biology. One of the reasons biology is such an active field right now is that there are major holes in our understanding...but, most importantly, we also have an incredibly powerful framework for research, that thing called the theory of evolution, which is driving an extremely successful research program.

The complaint we biologists have isn't to pointing out flaws in evolution. It's that the only "flaws" you bring up are such goddamn stupid things, misbegotten misconceptions that have no relationship to any of the real issues in research and that only point out your own ignorance. Massive holes in the whole theory? Google for them? Good grief. You can't even name one genuine problem. All you've mentioned is that pathetic probability argument.

Read this page. Your objections are jokes, jokes on you, and we're laughing at you.

Paul:Commisar:... (Below threshold)
Michael:

Paul:

Commisar:

You wacky guys! I'll bet you planned this whole debate in advance. You're both laughing real hard while you type, right?

Right?

Paul, you still have yet to... (Below threshold)
Eric:

Paul, you still have yet to answer Andy, from what I've seen. You continue to combine abiogenesis and evolution. That is incorrect. Abiogenesis is the whole lightning bolt hitting ooze concept. Evolution requires reproducing life forms as a pre-requisite.

I also don't think that a new finding that hasn't yet been peer-reviewed and/or replicated is somehow 'a deathknell' for any scientific theory. If the vindings are valid, then the theories will have to be adjusted, reviewed, and re-analyzed in order to better match observed phenomena.

Good luck with trying to re-write the Bible in such a way.

About 90% of what I have seen here is people talking past each other, and claiming cheap 'victories.' The other 10% is misleading and vague definitions that are contrary to proper usage. That leaves about 0% of worthwhile conversation.

Eric, Eric, you're missing ... (Below threshold)
Michael:

Eric, Eric, you're missing the humor.

Eric >abiogenesis... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Eric

>abiogenesis,

Read my update. I know what it is and how to spell it.

>don't think that a new finding that hasn't yet been peer-reviewed and/or replicated is somehow 'a deathknell' for any scientific theory

Never said it was... I said if it were true, it served to show how little we know.

>Good luck with trying to re-write the Bible in such a way.

Good luck putting words in my mouth.

>About 90% of what I have seen here is people talking past each other, and claiming cheap 'victories.'

Which you added to with the Bible comment. Nice job hypocrite.

Note the high points. Tw... (Below threshold)
Sean:

Note the high points. Two species interbred.

According to the definition of species proponents of evolution attempt to shove down the throats of non-true-believers, "species" refers to two sets of organisms that cannot interbreed. That is how "evolutionists" 'know' when speciation has occurred. So, using their own definition, breeding two different plants is not proof of evolution, its proof that the plants were not different species.

You continue to combine abiogenesis and evolution. That is incorrect.

It depends on how you look at it. Most people arguing for evolution do so because they are trying to argue away God. Well and good. But if you can regress all life back to a single organism or even a single set of organisms - which is what evolution claims - you are stuck with, where did those original organisms come from?

Well, abiogenesis steps in at that point and says, from nowhere. Life started from a bunch of inert chemicals that were floating in the primordial oceans (or ooze, if you prefer). They up and began living one day. From there, evolution took over and today we're driving on highways and going to the moon!

So you see, there actually is a connection between abiogenesis and evolution. Evolutionists don't like to go back that far because it is their biggest problem. If you have to admit something other than random chance started this whole "life" thing, you have to consider that something else just might have created all the species on Earth. And that isn't pleasant for an evolutionist to consider.

Q: Are you being deliberate... (Below threshold)

Q: Are you being deliberately evasive, or not?

A. Neither

Q: Do you believe the Moon ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Q: Do you believe the Moon is made of dairy products, or not?

A: Neither.
--------

You don't do well at logic puzzles do you?


----OK one last time for Michael---
Your Question:

If you accept the fossils as real, do you believe that the diversity and change represented in them was accomplished A) unaided and strictly by genetic change, or B) guided by a higher power, either through Intelligent Design or by instantaneous Creation?

My answer:

I don't believe either. (Is that so hard to wrap your brain around?)

You see, my answer sums up ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

You see, my answer sums up the problem with your thinking.

You see it as "The bible thumpers vs us enlightened scientific folks" But it isn't.

It is one bad theory vs another one that has no proof. Both of you guys are full of shit.

You keep pummeling my to find out if I'm one of them "bible thumpers" because after all if you can call me a bible thumper, you don't have to admit that your theory is flawed.

But I'm not a bible thumper AND I disagree with you.

You've never had to intellectually defend your belief in a flawed theory, you could just wail "He's a bible thumper" so you have no idea how to answer me.

That's the long way of saying, Neither.

You're killing me!... (Below threshold)
Michael:

You're killing me!

Actually Sean we're perfect... (Below threshold)
~DS~:

Actually Sean we're perfectly content to let you wallow in your ignorance. You have the constitutionally mandated right to believe whatever you wish personally with regard to biology or anything else. I for one would be very uncomfortable living in a society which restricted your freedom in that regard.
You even have the right to raise your children in that same dark ignorance, you can homeschool them, or send them to fundie private schools. Up to you.
Where your rights end is when you support individuals who would attempt to strip science and insert your peculiar mythology in its stead, and ram that down the throats of children in public schools. That is a right you do not have, and that's what this is about. Aside from the integrity issue, our culture is critically dependant on the applications of science. Including our military (it's because of science we can project our power around the world, and take on forces five time sour size on their home turf and wipe the desert with them). Perhaps this is why Richard Marburger, the WH science advisors to President Bush, describes IDC as nonsense and pseudoscience. It's fine if you want to believe in ghosts and goblins or whatever, fuck with science though and you screwing around with our one advantage. It's damn near treasonous, and it should tell you something that Osama bin Laden and David Koresh agree[d] with your views on biology 100%.

as long as somebody is gett... (Below threshold)
Paul:

as long as somebody is getting the jokes.

"Life evolves enough to exp... (Below threshold)
Curtis:

"Life evolves enough to explain all the diversity of life including man" How is this laughable, oh enlightened one?

Where your rights end is... (Below threshold)
Sean:

Where your rights end is when you support individuals who would attempt to strip science and insert your peculiar mythology in its stead, and ram that down the throats of children in public schools.

Holy crap on a stick. Did I accidentally hit the button labelled "PRESS HERE FOR POMPOUS ASS" again?

Don't start speaking to me of what my rights are and are not you pompous ass. I disagree that evolution is so all-fired rock-solid as you'd like to believe and like everyone else to believe. I'm quite certain that principles of biology serve you well in your work as a biologist, including areas of genes and hereditary traits and what-not.

I don't advocate stripping science from schools. I'm a big fan of and believer in science. Like Paul, I find it laughable that so-called scientists look at evolution, which has not and cannot be proven, with all its holes and gigantic logical gaps (sciencists still use logic, don't they?) and cannot admit that, well, we have some problems with the theory, I guess its understandable that some rational people don't quite buy it.

Paul said:"It is one... (Below threshold)
Curtis:

Paul said:
"It is one bad theory vs another one that has no proof."

I am confused here... the bad theory (which has proof) is evolution and the other one (presumable good?) that has no proof is creationism?

If a theory that has proof is 'bad' what the hell makes a good theory?

I've been making the same s... (Below threshold)
ap0c:

I've been making the same sort of argument for years. When the left can produce someone who can recreate the "tide pool" theory in a lab, then I'll believe there is no god.

Paul... Let me see if I can... (Below threshold)
Darby:

Paul... Let me see if I can modify this a bit to clue certain people in:

"This is getting funny:

The Commissar: Do you believe A or B?

Paul: Neither

The Commissar: Do you believe B?

Paul: No.

The Commissar: So you believe in A?

Paul: No"

Commissar: What Paul is trying to say, that you have failed to understand is that he doesn't believe in A or B.

This means he doesn't believe in A.
This means he doesn't believe in B.

So in answer to your question. Doe you believe in A or B, the answer is None of the above.

Commissar: Do you believe that you are an idiot by choice, or by design?

Neither. Because you feel you are not an idiot, even though you're doing a wonderful job of proving otherwise.

"I never avoid a questio... (Below threshold)

"I never avoid a question." ... except when you don't want to be called a bible-thumper?

Do you believe God aided the diversity of life on Earth, or not?

Or would you prefer to avoid the question?

Darby,The choice b... (Below threshold)

Darby,

The choice between "A" and "not A" is not the same as the choice between "A" and "B."

I personally like how Paul ... (Below threshold)

I personally like how Paul rejects the current theory because it isn't complete. I guess Paul rejects things like macroeconomic theory, the theory of gravity, and other theories because there aren't complete (at least in every tiny detail).

To quote John Tukey:

All the laws of physics are wrong, at least in some ultimate detail, though many are awfully good approximations.

Or Lakatos:

All theories are born refuted.

Face it Paul, you are an unscientific whiner.

Since you have trouble with this I'll explain. The unscientific part is obvious, the whiner part comes from you long screeds where you whine about being called on your unscientific stance. Or to put it this way.

Okay, you think there are problem with the current Theory of Evolution. Fine. But when you reject it what takes its place? You clearly don't have a better theory. So, what do you do? Opperate in a nihilistic void when it comes to evolution?

Ok, Commissar, I'm gonna pl... (Below threshold)
Darby:

Ok, Commissar, I'm gonna play your little play on words.


"Do you believe God aided the diversity of life, or not?"

The Answer is No.

Next question?

Paul, I'll take care of your light work(I understnad where you are coming from) :P

From the beginning, in my p... (Below threshold)

From the beginning, in my post, if you read, you'll see very clearly that the question is all about "aided vs. unaided."

It has always been an "A" versus "not A" question. Any fair-minded reader, whatever their view, can see that in my post, and in Comments here.

Paul finally admitted that he wanted to avoid answering, because he fears I'll call him a bible-thumper.

How about you Darby, "Did God aid life's diversity, or NOT?"

Posted by: Mac Lorry</b... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Posted by: Mac Lorry

Without the vulnerability of the theory of Evolution to be falsified, it wouldn’t be considered science, but theology (and it could then be kick out of public schools). Knowing this, Darwin stated in The Origin of Species that:

"If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down."

Therefore, the search for irreducible complexity is a valid scientific pursuit. Michael J. Behe offers a number of examples of what he feels are irreducibly complex systems, such as bacterial flagellum, cilium, the ATP syntheses molecule and others.

While there has been lots of heated debate about irreducible complexity, no professional critic openly claims Dr. Behe is a quack or an ignorant armature. Dr. Behe has raised real questions and pointed out glaring holes in the scientific knowledge about his examples of irreducible complexity. If you google "irreducible complexity" you'll find articles claiming to have debunked various examples of irreducible complexity, only to see that Dr. Behe has successfully debunked the debunkers (science in action).

The most prophetic statement I have seen by a critic of irreducible complexity is that you can never know if something is really irreducibly complex. The irony is that this truism cuts both ways. Evolution will always remain an unproven theory as long as there's even one example of irreducible complexity that has not been explained away.

For Christians, read 1 Corinthians chapter 1 starting with verse 18 and you'll find that God left humankind in the same dilemma. God cannot be found by human wisdom, only by faith. Why you ask? You may need to read the whole book to understand that mystery.

Darby, okay then, since God... (Below threshold)

Darby, okay then, since God did not intervene, it happened ... naturally? unaided?

... please use your word, or your description.

"Abiogenesis is the whole l... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

"Abiogenesis is the whole lightning bolt hitting ooze concept. Evolution requires reproducing life forms as a pre-requisite."

In a lot of ways, this is somewhat misleading though.

Because the facts are that the particles to people evolution is based on the evolution that most "Bible Thumpers" and other evolution doubters don't argue with.

I think most people fully understand that all dogs have a common dog ancester, all cats have a common cat ancestor, but where there isn't any proof, and where doubters of the theory converge is at the dogs to cats/cats to dogs and whatever is in the middle evolution. There are certainly theories, but there isn't anything observable on this one, and it is one huge gaping hole in the theory.

Did God Aid Life's Diversit... (Below threshold)
Darby:

Did God Aid Life's Diversity, or NOT?

Yes, and No.

From the beginning of your post, if you read, the question is A or B.

The answer is in that hidden column C.

Perhaps he believes that Faires came and spread life about.
Perhaps he believes that Aliens came and spread the diversity of life.

His beliefs would then be neither A or B, but C instead.

Which is what makes you such a source of entertainment.

Let's call "God aiding life... (Below threshold)

Let's call "God aiding life" as "A."

Fairies are NOT God. Then Fairies aiding life is "Not A"

Aliens are NOT God. Then Aliens aiding life is "not A"

Natural, unaided evolution is also "not A."


>>I guess Paul rejects thin... (Below threshold)
Paul:

>>I guess Paul rejects things like macroeconomic theory

There is only one?????

But to answer your question if macroeconomic theory [sic] were perfect we would have no debate over when to raise interest rates or cut taxes. Are you saying YOU know the right answer to all those questions... Quick somebody call George Bush, Steve can be his lead economic advisor.
-------

>>>Okay, you think there are problem with the current Theory of Evolution. Fine. But when you reject it what takes its place? You clearly don't have a better theory. So, what do you do? Opperate in a nihilistic void when it comes to evolution?

HAHA! That one had be drying the tears from my eyes. Is there something wrong with that?

(Ok to keep the terms straight left you be a jerk and claim I confused them) EVOLUTION -- No I pretty much accept that while it is a theory it is fairly sound. (as defined by #2) above...

#1 and #3 from above? Major Major Flaws. So no, I don't believe it. That is not to say I never will... but it does not cross my burden of proof. If it crosses yours, more power to you.

Now- here is the kicker... I think they ARE the most probable. But that in a relative term. (see Hillary example) Having said that (unlike you) I'm AM a scientist and I can accept they are flawed.

You claim to be a scientist but refuse to accept your holy grail of a theory might be wrong... That's called religion Steven and you are smart enough to know that.

sssshhh Darby, I'm having f... (Below threshold)
Paul:

sssshhh Darby, I'm having fun.

"Do you believe God aided l... (Below threshold)

"Do you believe God aided life on earth?" is not a hard question to answer.

Nor am I the one playing semantic games with it.

Paul admitted that he avoids it because he doesn't want to be called a 'bible-thumper." Darcy introduces fairies and aliens.

My question to Paul is sincere, not tricky, nor a matter of semantics.

"Do you believe God was involved?"

The simple fact of the matt... (Below threshold)
Darby:

The simple fact of the matter is the answer that you recieved did not fir the mold in which you live your life in. A or B? I don't believe in either. That doesn't fit the little box you live in, so you keep pushing the issue about A or B.


God created life a LONG LONG time ago. Did he create it as we know it? No. Has there been mutation? Has there been Evolution since then? Yes.

>Paul finally admitted that... (Below threshold)
Paul:

>Paul finally admitted that he wanted to avoid answering, because he fears I'll call him a bible-thumper.

Where? That's not what I said.

Darby:Dammit! You... (Below threshold)
Michael:

Darby:

Dammit! You're going to wreck the fun.

Fine, Darby. Dozens of comm... (Below threshold)

Fine, Darby. Dozens of comments later, you offer a clear, English answer. "God started it; evolutionary mutations picked up since."

Not sure why you can answer directly, but he who "never avoids a question" cannot.

Did He create one uni-cellular thing? Or several? Or a whole bunch of slightly complex things? A general answer is good enough. "I don't know to that level" works too.

P.S. Check your email. You got one from Paul warning you "DONT ANSWER. HE'S GONNA CALL YOU A THUMPER!!!!"

Paul:You don't hav... (Below threshold)
Michael:

Paul:

You don't have to say it. You were thinking it. We can tell.

>Paul finally admitted that... (Below threshold)
Paul:

>Paul finally admitted that he wanted to avoid answering, because he fears I'll call him a bible-thumper.

MY, MY you do a have an imagination. Where EXACTLY did I say that?
==============
>It has always been an "A" versus "not A" question.

It has?
-------------
If you accept the fossils as real, do you believe that the diversity and change represented in them was accomplished A) unaided and strictly by genetic change, or B) guided by a higher power,
-------------

Then why the hell did you ask an A-B question?
==============

Commissar you are all over the map just inventing things.

OK OK OK I'm bored. (sorry to those of you enjoying the floor show)

NO, FOR THE LOVE OF THE PETRI DISH, I DON'T BELIEVE B!!!!

Now what the hell is your point?!?!?

Darby,Your answer ... (Below threshold)

Darby,

Your answer is clearly "A," in that God was involved, as I noted before, even slightly or indirectly or by spiritual actuation.

"Okay, you think there are ... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

"Okay, you think there are problem with the current Theory of Evolution. Fine. But when you reject it what takes its place?"

So your only objection to anyone doubting evolution is that we don't have a scientific model to take its place? Please, that is just insane.

The answer is that, I think there are too many holes in the particles to people theory of evolution to believe it, and we may not have the answers to "what else could it be?"

Science is extremely useful, but science doesn't provide the answers to everything, and science sometimes gets things wrong, and has to change what it believed.

I figure outside of a "God did it" explaination, that there will likely be an alternative learned as we learn it isn't fact.

I admit my theology allows me to be more than comfortable with the holes, I don't have to have an alternative explaination, apparantly you do. Although please don't give me any tripe about there being holes, because there are huge holes, when it comes to explaining how species A became species B, and later species C, D, E, etc.

Ok, Those last 2 postings o... (Below threshold)
Darby:

Ok, Those last 2 postings of mine were kind of spaced out, and not very well said.

Do I believe that God was involved in the diversity of life?

My answer to your question is in that "C" category that you are unwilling to accept(Answer at the bottom of the post).

Regarding Paul and his beliefs(Whatever they may be).

You've put the question in a black and white world. You have set it up to choose A or B. You can't choose anything else.
Whatever Paul believes in, is obviously in the grey scale. I don't know how many more times this needs to be said, or in how many different ways it needs to be said.

Do I believe that lifes diversity was aided by God?

No.

Do I believe that God created life?

Yes.

BTW I don't believe A eithe... (Below threshold)
Paul:

BTW I don't believe A either -- for the record.

"You don't have to say i... (Below threshold)
Paul:

"You don't have to say it. You were thinking it. We can tell."

ROFLMAO

I'll say it again... I'm glad somebody gets the jokes. I'd hate to think I'm laughing my fool head off all by myself.

Okay, Paul, God was not inv... (Below threshold)

Okay, Paul, God was not involved, in your belief, not in any way, however slight or indirect.

Not sure why you took so many replies to answer that, but it's your site. Fine.

Evolution and mutation is a 'flawed theory' in your view. (That's clear.)

But it all happened here on Earth, unaided by The Deity, but not by mutation, evolution, or natural selection. ... Oh wait ... Evolution is possible, but less likely than some other explanation, which is not Creation, but which you refuse to describe.

I am confused.

I find this entire thread a... (Below threshold)
Darby:

I find this entire thread a riot. Last time I laughed this hard on wizbang was during Jay's Blogging of the Conventions... Oh the humanity.

Commissar;So far y... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Commissar;

So far you have ignored my answering your question.

You've claimed I was afraid to be called a bible thumper even though I never said anything of the kind.

You've claimed you asked an AA question when (duh) it was clearly an AB question.

I hope and trust that after wasting my afternoon doing little more than playing straight man for Michael, you have something profound to say.

I don't believe B (or A) and I've said it for hours. Now do you have a freaking point?

"You keep pummeling my t... (Below threshold)

"You keep pummeling my to find out if I'm one of them "bible thumpers" because after all if you can call me a bible thumper, you don't have to admit that your theory is flawed."

aided or unaided?

BTW, I actually am a Bible-... (Below threshold)
Michael:

BTW, I actually am a Bible-thumper. The diversity of life was not "aided" by God. HE DID THE WHOLE THING.

I guess if I were more sophisticated I wouldn't be having so much fun.

God was involved (even a li... (Below threshold)

God was involved (even a little bit, or at the start, or by indirection), OR He was not.

That choice does not admit 'neither.'

"You can't be a little bit pregnant." Yes/No questions are not hard to answer.

Was God involved in life on Earth, or NOT?

Michael,You gotta ... (Below threshold)

Michael,

You gotta address the fossil record question in my post.

>>>But it all happened here... (Below threshold)
Paul:

>>>But it all happened here on Earth, unaided by The Deity, but not by mutation, evolution, or natural selection. ... Oh wait ... Evolution is possible, but less likely than some other explanation, which is not Creation, but which you refuse to describe.


HEH- I don't have to know the answer to know that your theory is full of shit. If tell me the moon is made of cream cheese I don't have to have a soil sample to tell you that you are full of it.

You (and steve both) have now moved the bars so that unless I can give you another theory then I must accept yours as reality.

I looked in my "Handy Dandy Guide to the Scientific Method" (I made that up) and I did not see that anywhere. Can you give me a page number?

"You keep pummeling my t... (Below threshold)
Paul:

"You keep pummeling my to find out if I'm one of them "bible thumpers" because after all if you can call me a bible thumper, you don't have to admit that your theory is flawed."

You missed my point by miles... That was discussing your motivation, not mine.

Nice quoting out of context... (Below threshold)

Nice quoting out of context there Marc Lorry. Care to post the next sentence? Didn't think so. The quote with the next sentence is,

If it could be demonstrated that any complex organ existed, which could not possibly have been formed by numerous, successive, slight modifications, my theory would absolutely break down. But I can find out no such case.

So Marc Lorry is using selective quoting. Nice job there Marc.

For those of you who are interested you can find the entire chapter here.

Therefore, the search for irreducible complexity is a valid scientific pursuit. Michael J. Behe offers a number of examples of what he feels are irreducibly complex systems, such as bacterial flagellum, cilium, the ATP syntheses molecule and others.

And all of them have been shown to have evolved via natural means.

But to answer your question if macroeconomic theory [sic] were perfect we would have no debate over when to raise interest rates or cut taxes. Are you saying YOU know the right answer to all those questions... Quick somebody call George Bush, Steve can be his lead economic advisor.

Boy that point went right over your head didn't it. Of course, macroeconomic theory is imperfect. That was the point of my bringing it up. You seem to be saying you reject the Theory of Evolution because it has problems. Fine. So to all those macroeconomic theories. They all have problems. Do you reject them all?

HAHA! That one had be drying the tears from my eyes. Is there something wrong with that?

(Ok to keep the terms straight left you be a jerk and claim I confused them) EVOLUTION -- No I pretty much accept that while it is a theory it is fairly sound. (as defined by #2) above...

Well rejecting all theories because they are imperfect means you should reject all of them. Right on down to the theory of gravity. Second of all, the driver for microevolution is theorized to be the same driver for macroevolution. Hence rejection seems just a tad irrational.

Now- here is the kicker... I think they ARE the most probable. But that in a relative term. (see Hillary example) Having said that (unlike you) I'm AM a scientist and I can accept they are flawed.

Accepting the best theory, even though flawed is what scientists of all stripes do. The reason is that science without a theory grounding it is just junk. I don't want to go into the correlation/causation thing here and other potential problems of not having a theory to work form, but having a theory is imperative.

For the record, you have constructed a strawman in your post. I don't know of any biologist or scientist who says their theories are perfect or are not flawed. Read the Lakatos and Tukey quote again please. I am quite comfortable with the notion that theories are flawed. They are flawed because we don't know everything. I have no problem with it at all. I freely admit it. The current Theory of Evolution has flaws. Not everything can be explained. There are problems. Are there major devastating problems that neccesitate major re-working of the theory? Not that I know of, but I'm not an evolutionary biologist.

Now, if you think the current Theory of Evolution is the "best" we have right now. Then what is the problem with teaching it and not teaching hoodoo crap like ID?

Commissar:The foss... (Below threshold)
Michael A. Meyer:

Commissar:

The fossil record is not fake. God created the fossil record. He created the organisms captured in the fossil record. He created you.

When I die and go to heaven, I will ask God to give me a better explanation of how exactly how he does all this cool stuff. I'll send you a message and share what I find out.

Paul,You don't wan... (Below threshold)

Paul,

You don't want to answer so you can score debating points. Or prevent me from scoring.

I haven't lowered the bar or moved the goalposts or changed the subject, or played word games.

"Was God involved in life on Earth or not?" That was my question in the original post, and in these Comments.

Your only answer is "No, He wasn't. But your theory is full of shit."

Okay, you have no view, at least not that you'll offer, but mine is full of shit. I can't argue with that.

>Read my update. I know wha... (Below threshold)
Eric:

>Read my update. I know what it is and how to spell it.

It still has nothing to do with Evolution, and including it as an objection to 'Evolution' is disingenious. Refining gas out of oil has nothing to do with building a car -- the process of building the car assumes that the gas just happens to be there. I think I also spelled it correctly, too, if we are now scoring 'victory' on spelling. Also, the update was not there when I started to respond. I have since read it.

>Never said it was... I said if it were true, it served to show how little we know.

And that's fine. Anyone who assumes we know everything is an idiot.

>Good luck putting words in my mouth.

Did I say you? Did I reference any assumptions about your personal beliefs (with which I am completely unfamiliar, btw)? My point was that the scientific consensus has changed and does change and will change. Religion, generally, does not -- not peacefully, at least.

>Which you added to with the Bible comment. Nice job hypocrite.

Sadly, I'll have to add this to that 90%. I don't know if you believe the Bible or not. I don't care if you believe the Bible or not. My point is how science (real science, not lay-people-discussing-science) differs from religion.

For lay people, there is a certain degree of faith involved in the process. There is a certain degree of faith when you get into a car, too. That it would actually do anything, that it wouldn't explode or catch fire, that the air-bag won't blow up in your face because it was installed wrong, etc. None of this 'faith' makes car mechanics 'high priests.' It's a different kind of faith, just an assumption that other people understand things that you may not.

> A scientist who does not admit he might potentially be wrong is really a theologian.

This is absolutely 100% true.

>1) Lightning hits ooze and it becomes life. (yes Steve that is spelled, abiogenesis)

>2) Life changes over time (proper definition of Evolution)

>3) Life evolves enough to explain all the diversity of life including man. (oozer theory)

>#1 Is a tough sell scientifically.

This is true, there is no conclusive 100% answer on this; however, there has been a lot of work done on it, and it has been demonstrated, so far, that 'organic' compounds can certainly be formed from inorganic mechanisms. There is still room for a lot of work to be done here.

>#2 is Pretty Solid

More or less, but there is still work to be done even here. How do things change, why do things stay the same, etc. The concept of DNA is still less than 100 years old. There are volumes of things we don't yet know.

>#3 Is (scientifically) near laughable. (today)

This is where I would disagree. We have fossil evidence of times when there was apparently not the same degree of diversity as we have now. Actually, we have a couple examples of apparent mass-extinctions, where during the aftermath there was apparently not the same degree of diversity that had been before or since.

Note, there are a lot of 'apparentlies' in what I have written. Is what I wrote certain to an absolute degree of certitude? No. Is it certain to a 'beyond a reasonable doubt' certitude? Some of it, yes; some of it, no. Is it certain to a 'preponderance of the evidence' degree of certitude? Again, for some of it yes, but not all. Hell, I may have even gotten something wrong. It happens.

However, for you to assume that the science is 'laughable' is just as arrogant as those who assume that your (apparent) disdain for science in this case is 'laughable' (or as one comment said 'the joke is on you.'). Neither position is correct. (I will not post the link to the definition of 'neither' since you seem to already be aware of it.)

Michael,Thanks for... (Below threshold)

Michael,

Thanks for your answer. You're honest enough to admit it.

No matter what the fossil record shows, or might show in the future, even the allegedly missing cat/dog ancestor, you will hold that God created those creatures.

It's a 'bullet-proof' position, that permits no debate. I don't mean that in an insulting way. But if your position is that all possibly explanatory fossils, of any character, were created by God, that ends it. Fair enough.

As to why God would create and permit extinctions of his creations ... such an apparent contradiction is merely one of His mysteries that we can't know. I respect that belief.

Commissar:Still no... (Below threshold)
Michael:

Commissar:

Still not getting it. NOTHING is preventing you from arguing about whether your views on evolution are full of shit. Paul is just demonstrating that this is the last thing you want to do.

Repent of your sins, Commissar. There is still time to save your soul.

Commissar:Your wel... (Below threshold)
Michael:

Commissar:

Your welcome. And your right, my position is bullet proof. And unprovable. And, frankly, superstitious if you don't agree with me.

I asked "he who never avoid... (Below threshold)

I asked "he who never avoids a question," a simple one ---

"Was God involved at all, in any way, in the creation and diversity of life on Earth?"

He finally answered "No." In the same breath, he dismissed evolution. And he refuses to offer any other explanation.

Makes it tough to discuss things.

>>Boy that point went right... (Below threshold)
Paul:

>>Boy that point went right over your head didn't it. Of course, macroeconomic theory is imperfect. That was the point of my bringing it up. You seem to be saying you reject the Theory of Evolution because it has problems. Fine. So to all those macroeconomic theories. They all have problems. Do you reject them all?

No, not at all... I believe in the whole trickle down thing... But NEWS FLASH! I might be wrong. Why is it that "Evolution Zealots" (abio zealots, you pick the term) can't say the same thing....

STOP THE PRESSES

Steve finally said:

"The current Theory of Evolution has flaws"

WOW! That's all I've asked for...

You know Steve... What has annoyed me on a personal level with you is that you are one of the smarter ones. My point has always been that the people who believe this theory(ies) are religious like in their refusing to accept other possibilities. If someone says there are flaws in the theory they get attacked as a freak of nature.... What has always pissed me off about you is that I knew that you were enough of a scientist to know better. "You just acted like a jerk on the internet"

Lemme quote myself:

--------
And they are sooo intellectually dishonest. Not a one of them will actually say:

"You're right Paul. There are some major holes in the theory. BUT it is the best theory we have today. History may prove us to be fools, but for today I believe it is the most probable way to answer all the questions surrounding the diversity of life on earth. But I do understand that there are enough problems still in the theory that you are not convinced yet."

Is it that hard?

Instead they resort to insulting their critics and lecturing people that THEY are scientists... Bull Shit. A scientist who does not admit he might potentially be wrong is really a theologian.
--------

Reasonable people can disagree over the merits of one theory or the other. I believe in some theories which today have flaws. But I ALSO believe that THIS theory is so flawed, I can't say I believe it. (yet)

But I admit I was worn out about you trying to score a political point and ignoring everything I said.

BTW for the record the whole "What do we teach in schools?" thing... DUDE I never once said a word about that!

You keep accusing my of demanding we teach ID. You are projecting your last internet fight on me. I never said anything like that. (go look)

By beef is the people who claim to be scientists who refuse to accept a theory might be wrong. Up until a few posts ago that included you.

Like I said several comment... (Below threshold)

Like I said several comments up, you're lying. It's not worth the effort to discuss the subject with someone so patently dishonest.

"You're right, Paul. The... (Below threshold)

"You're right, Paul. There are some major holes in the theory. BUT it is the best theory we have today. History may prove us to be fools, but for today I believe it is the most probable way to answer all the questions surrounding the diversity of life on earth. But I do understand that there are enough problems still in the theory that you are not convinced yet."

Thanks, Paul. That's a statement worth discussing.

It's tempting to be agreeable and say "okay."

But I disagree. We don't make that kind of qualification about gravitational theory. We (or most people, I think you included) go ballistic when Holocaust deniers offer similar statements. And, no, no, no, I'm NOT calling you "as bad as a Holocaust denier."

I am saying that there's enough evidence to support evolution as there is to support gravity and fact of the Holocaust.

Are there really enough "major problems" with evolution to justify that paragraph? Not to me.

I called you a flat-earther. And I won't retract it or apologize. But I will explain. Willful refusal to accept facts (among which I include evolution) drives me crazy. Especially from those "on my side" of the political fence. It's like, "Sure it's a big tent, and we have our disagreements, but we're happy to count in our ranks Joe over there who believes the Sun goes around the Earth."

We need a chronosynclasticinfundibulum.

"BTW for the record the who... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

"BTW for the record the whole "What do we teach in schools?" thing... DUDE I never once said a word about that! "

Actually this one is a no brainer.

You teach evolution theory, but as you teach it, you teach the holes as well. There are some things in evolution you know as observable fact, those things are easy to teach, but there are a lot of things in the theory when you move beyond what is observable that there just isn't scientifically testable proof for, and teachers should be honest that we don't know those answers yet.

But everytime I see one of these debates, the "Bible thumpers" get accused of trying to bring religion into the classroom. But what the EZ's try to do, is make any mention of the holes a religious issue. You could list the holes in big picture evolution for a good while, and never mention the word, God, ID, or the Bible. Also, it would be nice if the intro biology courses in high school and college would stop teaching the things we know are no longer examples of evolution (things like the fetal changes, pepper moths etc).

I also admit to my bible thumper bias. I believe strongly that God did it, I can't say how he did it, but I know that he did, and I believe it wasn't something that happened randomly, but with a plan.

>Still not getting it. NOTH... (Below threshold)
Paul:

>Still not getting it. NOTHING is preventing you from arguing about whether your views on evolution are full of shit. Paul is just demonstrating that this is the last thing you want to do.

Michael is the smartest guy in the room... OK the second smartest, I'm back now. ;-)

==============
and then The Commissar rambles into a revelation.....

---------
"Was God involved at all, in any way, in the creation and diversity of life on Earth?"

He finally answered "No." In the same breath, he dismissed evolution. And he refuses to offer any other explanation.

Makes it tough to discuss things.
-------------

You finally figured it out Commissar.. or you will after I connect the dots... Your 2 questions were flawed, so even after I answered 15 times you had nothing to say. (lemme go back into paraphrase mode)

Paul(in original post) New data came out today that might raise even more questions about the "oozer theory."

The Commissar This flat earther doesn't believe in evolution.. OH YEAH, well I have 2 questions for you... (reduced to one question) Do you think God did it?

The problem with your "two questions" was that no matter how I answered, it did not prove the "oozer theory" correct or even prove me to be wrong in any way. As I said in this post..."You may as well ask me my favorite color"

The problem you had Commissar, is that you could not refute what I said logically, so you goofed and asked 2 irrelevant questions. Which I happily answered.

(Swerving into the larger point)

When someone asks even the most basic of questions about these clump of theories, you guys get completely irrational. You refuse to admit that they might be wrong so you just attack.

In this case, you asked 2 meaningless questions and you got bit. Lemme quote Michael again:

"NOTHING is preventing you from arguing about whether your views on evolution are full of shit. Paul is just demonstrating that this is the last thing you want to do."

Couldn't have said it better myself.

Just Me,Continuing... (Below threshold)

Just Me,

Continuing my thoughts above, ...

Should we teach 'holes' in gravitional theory? Should we teach that maybe there are 'some legitimate questions' about the Holocaust?

Absent his invective, PZM makes some good points. The moving forward of scientific knowledge, within a secure, established, "proven" framework and working out inconsistencies and minor details is the 'great work' of science. Calling those things "major holes" is problematic.

--------Thanks, Paul... (Below threshold)
Paul:

--------
Thanks, Paul. That's a statement worth discussing.
It's tempting to be agreeable and say "okay."
But I disagree.

Willful refusal to accept facts (among which I include evolution) drives me crazy.
--------

Earth to Commissar: Evolution is not a fact. Get over it.

It can be argued that there... (Below threshold)
Eric:

It can be argued that there are no facts, only perceptions.

>Should we teach 'holes' in... (Below threshold)
Paul:

>Should we teach 'holes' in gravitional theory?

Duh! Yes

>Should we teach that maybe there are 'some legitimate questions' about the Holocaust?

Duh! Yes! Some say 6 million some say 13 million some say 1 million. Teaching that the number is debated is obvious... (Denying it is another. )

The problem is you guys refuse to even hint we might be wrong here. Thru history science has been wrong more often than it is right. There is no shame in science being wrong... There is a world of shame in not admitting it.

Paul,I'll not atte... (Below threshold)

Paul,

I'll not attempt a full defense of evolution here in your comment thread. As you said "Google it." Or go read PZMyers blog. Or SJ Gould.

I DID ask you a question, which you fairly paraphrased. But you avoided it for a long time.

Perhaps the discussion has moved on. If your position is "NOT GOD, NOT EVOLUTION," then it's reasonable to then ask you what might be your explanation.

I haven't been tricked or gulled or anything. I'll repeat that I'll not attempt a defense of evolution, or gravity, or the Holocaust, here in your comment thread.

You previous-post-but-one, the "hey, maybe there are some holes," provides a better basis for discussion, but not for point-scoring. If your position is "PROBABLY EVOLUTION, BUT STILL SOME QUESTIONS," that's a "debateable" proposition, in a good way.

Eric, you can... but then I... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Eric, you can... but then I might delete you. ;-)

Home from work and back for... (Below threshold)
Michael:

Home from work and back for more fun.

Paul, let's be fair. INTRAspecial evolution is well-enough established that we can fairly call it a fact. A problem arises when we challenge or dismiss "evolution" in an unqualified way. It sounds like we Bible-thumpers (although you are still in the closet) are dismissing what to most people appears to be pretty obvious. In reality, we usually mean is that the ooze theory is pure conjecture, and INTERspecial evolution has so many problems that it is nearly laughable.

So, Paul, your original reference to the article on the self-healing DNA of plants has nothing to do with the ooze theory, little to do with interspecial evolution, and doesn't really put a dent in intraspecial evolution.

But, you sure were effective at baiting the hook for some EVs!

Thanks for an entertaining afternoon. Too bad I didn't get any work done.

Posted by Mac Lorry<... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Posted by Mac Lorry

Steve,

It's not a misquote. It's easily assumed that Darwin didn't find any examples of irreducible complexity by the time he published The Origin of Species. Who would publish a theory they themselves had already disproved? Darwin was no fool.

But it's not surprising Darwin did not find any examples of irreducible complexity. At the time The Origin of Species was published the science of microbiology didn't even exist and no one knew anything about DNA.. The search for examples of irreducible complexity continues to this day.

And all of them have been shown to have evolved via natural means.

Care to cite your source. The explanations would answer some of the most profound riddles of nature and you claim they have all been solved.

This goes to my earlier point as to how hard it is for anyone to concede points on this topic, myself included. We all have a lot at stake in our positions and that's why it gets nasty so fast.

"Should we teach 'holes' in... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

"Should we teach 'holes' in gravitional theory? Should we teach that maybe there are 'some legitimate questions' about the Holocaust?"

Click up a few lines, and reread what Paul said.

That was really a dumb question.

Where there are questions or debates, it would be dishonest to pretend as if they didn't exist.

Should we teach 'holes' ... (Below threshold)
Sean:

Should we teach 'holes' in gravitional theory? Should we teach that maybe there are 'some legitimate questions' about the Holocaust?

Yes we should teach the holes in gravitational theory. To my knowledge they are taught, at least mentioned. As for the holocaust, now you're just mixing historical fact with scientific fact. That's just silly.

The problem most people have with evolution is not that it is being taught in public schools. It is how it is being taught. The known and obviouls problems should be laid out in all their ugly. Otherwise, like with any scientific subject, the only ones being hurt are the students.

Evolution should not be taught as if it is the all-mighty Gospel of science. The abject horror most "evolutionists" display at the mention of teaching the unknows of evolution - as well as how the theory has changed and itself evolved over time - make it seem like supporters don't believe it can stand up to that kind of honest critique. I don't think supporters really believe that the theory wouldn't hold up to such a critique, it just seems that way from some of their reactions.

I believe in God. I believe God created the Universe and everything in it. I do not know how He did it. Could he have used evolution as a tool? Sure. Why not? The fact is, even if all the holes are filled and questions answered about evolution, that won't and cannot shake my firm belief in God and His works. The more I learn from science about the world and universe around me, its complexities and interactions, the more amazed I am at God's creations.

So you see, it isn't that God and science are naturally opposed to each other. It isn't God vs. Science. People can believe in God, and can believe in Science. I do. Does that mean certain things presented by science are worth a fair amount of skepticism? No, absolutely not.

The fact of the matter is, everyone on this thread and at the other website who are supporting and arguing for evolution until they are blue in the face, have been set up by Paul. Like it or not, reasonable, rational, intelligent people can be of the opinion that the theory of evolution is not all that strong at our current level of knowledge. Rather than admit that, the EZ's worked themselves into a lather over it. Just like Paul predicted.

Even Steve, who is by far the most reasonable proponent of evolution I've seen on the internet, who can accept that there are holes in the theory and in our understanding, cannot seem to admit that reasonable, rational, intelligent people can look at the evidence, shake their head, and say, "I don't see it." At least not as being as infallible as most proponents would have you believe.

Typo. dangit.D... (Below threshold)
Sean:

Typo. dangit.

Does that mean certain things presented by science are worth a fair amount of skepticism? No, absolutely not.

Ugh. Does that mean certain things presented by science are not worth a fair amount of skepticism? No, absolutely not.

<a href="http://www.newscie... (Below threshold)

Proteins Recovered from Dinosaur Egg

They bear strong similarities to proteins from chicken eggs.

[snip]

Mary Schweitzer at North Carolina State University in Raleigh injected rabbits with protein from either bird or dinosaur eggshells, collected the antibodies produced and tested whether they stuck to the other type of egg protein. Both types of antibody reacted to both proteins, indicating that they were similar (Proceedings of the Royal Society B, DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2004.2876).

Gee, can I go into "I told you so" mode now?

Marc Lorry,It's... (Below threshold)

Marc Lorry,

It's not a misquote.

I didn't say it was a misquote, but selective quoting. You know kind of like this:

Marc Lorry writes:
...Darwin did not find any examples of irreducible complexity.

By the way, you just gutted your Darwin quote as support. If Darwin couldn't find IC biological structures then appealing to him for support is just as foolish.

Uh, perhaps I missed it, bu... (Below threshold)

Uh, perhaps I missed it, but I didn't see Paul answer Tom-WWR's or Andy's questions.

(goes to look again)

Btw Paul, you are wrong.

>Paul, let's be fair. INTRA... (Below threshold)
Paul:

>Paul, let's be fair. INTRAspecial evolution is well-enough established that we can fairly call it a fact.

Geeze Michael... Don't make me lump you in with the no-reading nincompoops.

I've said many times that is solid. (We still can't call it a FACT but that is hair splitting) Go read my update it is #2.

----

>So, Paul, your original reference to the article on the self-healing DNA of plants has nothing to do with the ooze theory, little to do with interspecial evolution, and doesn't really put a dent in intraspecial evolution.

On this we disagree. (which means you are wrong;) If an organism has a "self righting" mechanism when it mutates it does raise additional questions about the whole shebang... Hell, you don't have to take my word for it, the story even says so and I bolded it.

Hey Michael, did you get th... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Hey Michael, did you get the humor in this one?

---------
Uh, perhaps I missed it, but I didn't see Paul answer Tom-WWR's or Andy's questions.

Btw Paul, you are wrong.
---------

Angie didn't see my answer but she is sure I'm wrong. OY!


Steve asks:Gee,... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Steve asks:

Gee, can I go into "I told you so" mode now?

Sure-- If a single data point proves your theory knock yourself out.

(rewinding the tape)

My argument was that if the data is confirmed it will change a whole lot about what we think/believe about evolution. The "told you so mode" was that it proves we don't know jack.

And as a scientist you have to admit (even thru clenched teeth ;) that if this is true we have to rethink a whole lot of things.

And (again) you don't have to take my word for it... The story says it in multiple places... I did not write the story, I just blogged it.

What Michael wrote (^^), at... (Below threshold)
-S-:

What Michael wrote (^^), at least by the time he did, this thread. Everything afterward seems more or less like punch drunk antagonism.

I'm just curious why the perspectives so limited to planet Earth? Meaning, Earth's got a lot of composition, even before anything occured here related to ooze, much less lightning.

Were Earth is came into being somehow (not an aspect of evolutionary biology, by the way) and that there was something from whence the Earth originated came into being somehow, and so on and so on. Whatever caused the (known) Big Bang occured somewhere and that came into being somehow. These are the issues that can't be explained by remaining stuck in who has more cheese in their definition of the moon and who doesn't.

Just to try to advance the discussion a bit.

Typo, sorry..."(omit word, ... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Typo, sorry..."(omit word, 'Were') Earth (omit 'is') came into being somehow..."

Should have read: "Earth came into being somehow (not an aspect of...)"

I'm busy, preoccupied here with...

"Geeze Michael... Don't mak... (Below threshold)
Michael:

"Geeze Michael... Don't make me lump you in with the no-reading nincompoops. "

I KNOW that you KNOW that intraspecial evolution is solid. It's a tactical issue -- when you say without qualification "Earth to Commissar: Evolution is not a fact . . ." they will always assume you are denying established facts unless you are more specific about the elements of "evolution" that you are referring to.

"On this we disagree. (which means you are wrong;) If an organism has a "self righting" mechanism when it mutates it does raise additional questions about the whole shebang... Hell, you don't have to take my word for it, the story even says so and I bolded it. "

It's does raise additional questions, but the portions of the article you did not bold (or quote) suggest that it's a minor hiccup for evolutionary theory, given that the self-righting mechanism does not occur reliably. So the probability argument against evolution may get a boost, but not enough to really change the debate. More to the point, your post refers repeatedly to the issue of whether "life comes from ooze," and the article is irrelevant on this subject.

"Hey Michael, did you get the humor in this one?"

Yes -- I don't know why they can't stop themselves. Well, actually I do. They are under Satanic influences.


Posted by: Mac Lorry... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Posted by: Mac Lorry

Steve,

You could argue that anything less than the entire works of Darwin is selective quoting, but as I pointed out, the statement by Darwin that he didn't find any examples that disproves his own theory is redundant. The fact that he published his theory makes that case.

Darwin's statement about how his theory could be disproved is as factual today as the day he wrote it. It's not uncommon for scientists to propose ways to test their theories, and often the means to perform those tests does not exit at the time the theory is published. That was the case with Darwin.

If evolution is the progressive stepwise development of complex living organisms through selective survival (and breading), then irreducibly complex features can't exist in those organisms. If irreducibly complex features do exist, than evolution is not the means by which those complex living organisms developed. At least not the only means. That was Darwin's insight, and it's just as profound as natural selection.

Modern technology has uncovered a number of examples of irreducible complexity for which there is currently no evolutionary explanation. That's not to say that some or all of the current examples won't be explained in the future, but until that day, evolution remains an unproven theory. Most scientist don't have a problem with that, and they readily acknowledge the need for more research, and the grant money and careers that go with that research. Science is a profession and questions are as important to it as answers.

>It's a tactical issue -- w... (Below threshold)
Paul:

>It's a tactical issue -- when you say without qualification "Earth to Commissar: Evolution is not a fact . . ." they will always assume you are denying established facts unless you are more specific about the elements of "evolution" that you are referring to.

OK that makes more sense and I guess you are right in a way but geeze if after 100 posts the context is not clear to people, they are helpless anyway. -- But you are right, I need to stick to my "oozers" nomenclature.

On your second point... yes and no. " given that the self-righting mechanism does not occur reliably"

That's the point, we don't know why it happens or really to what extent yet. We don't know what increases it or what retards it.

To accept the "oozer theory" as true, we still have to answer many questions... (enter Rumsfeld mode) This discovery, (assuming it is confirmed) tells us that:

We have questions we know.
We have questions we know about but can't actually make into questions.
We now have questions about things we did not even know about yesterday.
And
We have questions about things we still don't know about yet.
(Rummy would be proud)

In the journey to understand life we have taken the first 2 steps of a 1000 mile journey yet there are some who claim to see the other side.

Oh God, not again. Next tim... (Below threshold)

Oh God, not again. Next time try try critiquing M-theory. What's that? You're not a theoretical physicist? You're not an evolutionary biologist, either.

Why, oh why, do lay people think they have anything useful to add to the evolution debate? You're wholly entitled to your opinion. You're not entitled to have anyone who actually knows what they are talking about taking it seriously.

I imagine real evolutionary biologists are sick and tired of having to fend off uninformed criticism of their subject. I know I'd be pretty peeved if laymen kept trying to bend my ear about microwave amplifiers or database theory.

"Why, oh why, do lay people... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

"Why, oh why, do lay people think they have anything useful to add to the evolution debate?"

LOL enter the patronizing aspects of the debate.

I didn't realize that one had to have a doctorate in biology in order to have an opinion on evolution.

Well, tough shit, David Gil... (Below threshold)
julie:

Well, tough shit, David Gillies. I sure put up with a lot of crap by the same people lecturing Paul regarding my profession. The fact that they have no degree, no license, and no twenty years experience doesn't slow them down a bit in sharing their, cough cough, opinions.

Kick their asses, Paul! Kick 'em hard!

Modern technology ... (Below threshold)
Modern technology has uncovered a number of examples of irreducible complexity for which there is currently no evolutionary explanation.

Actually most of them have been shown not to be IC (irreducible complex). Hell Kenneth Miller even got Behe to recant on the blood clotting cascade. This is old meat that has been chewed so many times it is like potted meat food product. IC is just a waste of time and as Mark Perakh noted boils down to: Stupid, therefore designed.

Sure-- If a single data point proves your theory knock yourself out.

Paul, get your sarcasm meter checked post haste. Further, isn't that what you did? You found one data point that you thought proved something it didn't and then went into full sanctimonious condescension mode. Further, it isn't just one data point, but quite a few. This result and the discover of T-rex soft tissue makes two data points.

Paul writes: I ha... (Below threshold)
s9:

Paul writes: I hate to point out their denial of reality, but there is no more elegant theory than "God made it that way."

What a joke. "God made it that way" is not a theory— it's practically the ultimate in petitio principii.

See, this is why people think Paul is an idiot. When you trot out the most egregious of all possible logical fallacies and present it as the paragon of theoretical elegance, you shouldn't be surprised when the reaction you get is cruel, mocking laughter.

I'm laughing at you, Paul. And it's cruel, mocking laughter.

So the questions for Pau... (Below threshold)
s9:

So the questions for Paul remain on the table:

+ What does Paul really think is the best explanation for the origin of life?

+ Why is he confident that his theory is superior to the modern synthesis theory of evolution?

s9 ask that again an... (Below threshold)
Paul:

s9
ask that again and you will be deleted... Not because I don't want to answer the question but it is ABUNDANTLY clear you have not read the 100+ posts on this thread... yes they are a prerequisite.

Don't waste my freaking time.
============

Now on to someone who at least has a brain:

Steve said:

Paul, get your sarcasm meter checked post haste. Further, isn't that what you did?

Well yes but no... and that is the bitch about science. 1 data point in the affirmative is good but it doesn't prove anything by itself.

One data point in the negative can kill you.

In effect the "leverage" is science is always working against you. You can have 10,000 things saying yes but a single no can ruin the whole deal. -- That's not just this theory, that's the nature of life.

So my single data point is bigger than your single data point.

This result and the discover of T-rex soft tissue makes two data points.

My humble apologies. ;-)

Posted by: Mac Lorry... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

Posted by: Mac Lorry

Steve,

Dr. Behe has caused the Darwinist Kenneth Miller, a professor of biology at Brown University, to back track so far that at one point Dr. Miller had to retreat to the point of exclaiming that "evolution is smarter then we are", implying that evolution was the cause even if humans can't figure out how it could work. That sounds a lot like a religious statement; it's certainly not science.

For such Darwinists, evolution is not just science, it's the religion of science. Dr. Behe recently wrote "The Darwinian imagination is a marvel to behold. No wonder Darwinists try to rule out intelligent design 'as a matter of principle.' It surely can't be ruled out by the evidence."

Like Kenneth Miller, you want to rule out irreducible complexity as a matter of principle with statements about it having all been explained away and that it's old meat. That's nonsense. In fact Dr. Behe recently co-authored an article for the peer-reviewed science journal, Protein Science. Now let Darwinists like Kenneth Miller critic Dr. Behe in a forum where their professional standing as scientists is at risk. Now we'll see if they have any real evidence or if it's all PR.

Paul writes: ask ... (Below threshold)
s9:

Paul writes: ask that again and you will be deleted... Not because I don't want to answer the question but it is ABUNDANTLY clear you have not read the 100+ posts on this thread... yes they are a prerequisite.

Actually, I've read all the comments in this thread. And I've read all the comments in the evolution-related threads currently displayed on the front page. I've paid special attention to the ones you posted.

[Paul hijacks the post to add a link for s9.]

Dylan Thomas knock it off.... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Dylan Thomas knock it off.

I know this comment will be... (Below threshold)

I know this comment will be lost forever in a long line of comments, but Jeff Harrell, of "Shape of Days", turned his readers on to a cool issue of New Scientist magazine where they describe "13 things that do not make sense". The very first one is "The Placebo Effect". I couldn't help but see, not exactly a parallel to what Paul has described in his evolution post, but perhaps another instance of unexplainable genetic "markings" that occur in that tiny world of micro-micro thingys.

It's a good read even if you feel it has nothing to do with the subject at hand.

Oh man, you two need to tak... (Below threshold)

Oh man, you two need to take this act to Vegas. It's hilarious!

David Gillies,So y... (Below threshold)

David Gillies,

So you're saying that if we read up a little on M-Theory and watch a Discovery special or two on it, we shouldn't discuss or opine about it?

dylan - yes. Put you though... (Below threshold)
Paul:

dylan - yes. Put you thought together THEN post.

It's obnoxious.
=================
Oyster- "13 things that do not make sense"

I got that off slashdot a few days ago and never finished reading it. Thanks for the reminder,

Uhhhh... Bring back the do... (Below threshold)

Uhhhh... Bring back the dog and pony show!

Paul writes: [Pau... (Below threshold)
s9:

Paul writes: [Paul hijacks the post to add a link for s9.]

Excellent. Not only did you add a link, you also deleted the parts of the post you couldn't handle. You rule, dude.

I win the wager.

[Paul adds: "Good, use the nickel to buy a personality.]

If Paul thinks a nickel buy... (Below threshold)
rone:

If Paul thinks a nickel buys a personality, that explains why his is so shoddy.

The definition for #2 is to... (Below threshold)

The definition for #2 is too short. I think it should be "Even over short periods of history many new species are created and many become extinct."

I think a better writing of... (Below threshold)

I think a better writing of #3 is "Due to the diversity of the environment of Earth, #2 implies that significant diversity of species has resulted over millions of years."

As for evidence of #3: trilobites appear to be in widely distant places and a large span of time in the fossil record, but local variation exists.

The sentience aspect of #3 deserves an assertion of its own, defining what sentience *is*.

Quote:Should we teach 'hole... (Below threshold)
Septeus7:

Quote:Should we teach 'holes' in gravitional theory?

Yes, and we do. One of the holes is dark matter. Oh and PZ where's Haldane on the list of problems? Oh I guess you forgot about that gaping hole....*whistles*




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