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Do you HATE Evolution? Black Student Throws a Fit in Florida Evolution Class
Cure Socialism ^ | March 22, 2012 | Jonathon Moseley

Posted on 03/22/2012 7:44:32 AM PDT by Moseley

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To: betty boop

So was the creation of my physical body “from dust” less literal than the creation of Adam “from dust”?

Does describing the physical means whereby my body was created warrant the same supposedly rational attacks as would describing the physical means whereby evolution is accomplished?

If the DNA of a bacterial population is changed, and God doesn’t need to directly intervene, why would describing the mechanism whereby the bacterial DNA changed be a “Darwinist” argument?


151 posted on 03/23/2012 1:12:20 PM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send GOP to DC to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism)
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To: tacticalogic

No, the point of the illustration was the thesis of the article: Darwinism posits throw-away people, inferior people, etc.

The point was about the author’s theory of why she went on a rant: throw away people.

How you get that it was about her wanting to kill people is also how propaganda gets birthed. Quit the spin, TL. It’s obvious.


152 posted on 03/23/2012 1:25:15 PM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Pray Continued Victory for our Troops Still in Afghan!)
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To: allmendream; Alamo-Girl
So was the creation of my physical body “from dust” less literal than the creation of Adam “from dust”?

I have no idea, since I do not know what you mean by "less literal."

Does describing the physical means whereby my body was created warrant the same supposedly rational attacks as would describing the physical means whereby evolution is accomplished?

Darwinian evolution theory is driven by natural selection — which, in itself, is an immaterial concept, not a "physical means."

If the DNA of a bacterial population is changed, and God doesn’t need to directly intervene, why would describing the mechanism whereby the bacterial DNA changed be a “Darwinist” argument?

I wouldn't use a Darwinist argument in the first place. It doesn't explain as much as you think it does.

Darwin's theory is, at best, based on a "smoking gun." (See the excellent article by Carol Cleland for details re: "smoking guns" in science.) As long as Darwinists continue to search for and validate this "smoking gun," they will not be looking for any other plausible explanation for how evolution does its work. And it seems to me that, as long as they insist that evolution is a purely material process, they will continue to miss the boat entirely....

153 posted on 03/23/2012 1:53:30 PM PDT by betty boop (We are led to believe a lie when we see with, and not through the eye. — William Blake)
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To: betty boop
Really? You don't understand? That is amusing. I will explain.

I was created by God “from dust” but there was also an underlying cellular process involving DNA.

Adam was created by God “from dust” as well. Is it possible that as with my own creation “from dust” there was also a cellular process involving DNA going on?

Or was Adam's creation “from dust” a miracle because Adam was literally formed from dust - and my own creation “from dust” LESS literal and LESS miraculous - because I was also created through an understandable physical process?

Death of unfavorable variations in response to environmental stress is a physical means of changing the DNA of a population - it is not just conceptual.

You say you accept evolution - but apparently don't think it is explainable via physical means and that any attempt to do so is a “Darwinist” argument that justified what the woman did.

Do you similarly think that a description of the physical means whereby my body was formed “from dust” would be similarly justification and a “Darwinist” argument that reduces the role of God?

So was my creation “from dust” less literal than the creation of Adam “from dust” because there was an understandable physical process going on in the case of my creation?

Was my creation “from dust” less literal than the creation of Adam “from dust”?

154 posted on 03/23/2012 2:16:09 PM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send GOP to DC to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism)
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To: xzins
The article starts off with a link to the news report, and this :This is very sad. And it seems crazy at first.

And then goes on to argue that there's nothing crazy about what she did - ie it was all perfectly rational.

155 posted on 03/23/2012 2:44:33 PM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: allmendream; Alamo-Girl; Moseley
I was created by God “from dust” but there was also an underlying cellular process involving DNA.

Your soul was incarnated as a physical being using "dust" (i.e., "matter" — Genesis 2). You — your essential immaterial soul — was created from Eternity (Genesis 1), for Eternity — not just for its brief passage through the material world. DNA has nothing directly to do with souls. Physicality does not even enter the picture until Genesis 2, when the immortal soul was first "mortalized" as a physical being.

You seem to have an almost religious reverence for DNA. But can you tell me what you think DNA IS?

BTW, I am not a "dis-believer" in DNA. I just wonder whether you and I have the same understanding of what DNA IS....

My question: Do you think DNA is something purely chemical, physical, material? Alternatively, is a code decipher a material thing?

You wrote:

You say you accept evolution — but apparently don't think it is explainable via physical means and that any attempt to do so is a “Darwinist” argument that justified what the woman did.

Piffle!

I said that evolution cannot be explained exclusively by purely physical means. Darwinism attempts to do this. And that is why it fails.

Darwinist arguments always "reduce" the role of God in evolution — in fact, Darwinist arguments try to absolutely obviate the role of God, both as Creator and as the genius underwriting creational evolution (so to speak).

Darwinists say: Nature did it!!! We don't need God to explain this!!! Indeed, if you were to ask me, that is the entire point of the Darwinist enterprise; and that is the reason I am not a Darwinist.

I am not attempting to justify what the young woman did. I merely have empathy for her: I can understand how such a thing can happen, which is not the same thing as saying that I applaud it. (I have been known to deploy f-bombs myself, on rare occasions. My dearest 94-year-old mother has been known to threaten to "kill someone" every now and then. But I never expect her to actually do it.)

Keep things in perspective, I say. Don't make a mountain out of a molehill.

156 posted on 03/23/2012 2:59:06 PM PDT by betty boop (We are led to believe a lie when we see with, and not through the eye. — William Blake)
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To: betty boop
What DNA is?

Really?

DNA is a molecule, it is a physical molecule, made out of chemical elements, it is material. The molecules that ‘decode’ it into useful proteins are also physical molecules, made out of chemical elements and are material.

Well then, if evolution cannot be explained EXCLUSIVELY by physical means - there must obviously be SOME physical means involved. Could you present them in a non-”Darwinist” argument for us?

Please explain to me what physical means are involved in the evolution you accept.

This should be amusing!!!!

DNA is transcribed into RNA that is then translated into useful proteins.

That is it. That is what DNA is and what it does.

I have no religious reverence for a molecule.

So what my creation “from dust” less literal than the creation of Adam “from dust”?

157 posted on 03/23/2012 3:24:36 PM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send GOP to DC to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism)
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To: allmendream
So what my creation “from dust” [is] less literal than the creation of Adam “from dust”?

You are missing my main point. Which is: the "dust" — materiality — doesn't even enter the picture until Genesis 2. All the real, "important business" was transacted immaterially in Genesis 1.

Anther way to put that is: Physical incarnation is utterly dependent on there being a pre-existing "something" to incarnate. Man as a physical being (in contradistinction to a spiritual being) doesn't enter the picture until Genesis 2. This is the point where the physical world first emerges. The fact that there is a physical world to emerge at all is dependent on God's "labors" in Genesis 1.

You say DNA is a "molecule," a physical entity. As such, it is fully governed by chemical and physical processes. Fine. But my question is: What is it that DNA does? And where does it get its "marching orders" from to do what it does?

Do such questions even make any sense to you?

DNA has been described as the decryption key that "selects" for the proper information (and description) relevant to express a particular biological entity — everything from bacteria to daffodils to man — from a non-local source.

If this is so, then please note: we have left the world of biota and have entered the realm of mathematics, in particular the field of cryptology.

And of course, mathematics is not a physical or material thing....

158 posted on 03/23/2012 3:44:23 PM PDT by betty boop (We are led to believe a lie when we see with, and not through the eye. — William Blake)
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To: Moseley
I do prefer brunettes. I have seen many beautiful blondes, some of whom I personally am attracted to, but I am more attracted to brunettes than blondes.

So, would you say you used to prefer blonds but now you pick blackheads? ;o) (sorry, couldn't let such an opening go to waste)

159 posted on 03/23/2012 4:12:21 PM PDT by boatbums (God is ready to assume full responsibility for the life wholly yielded to Him.)
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To: tacticalogic

He does not argue that her behavior is acceptable. He says that if it fits his theory of her behavior that it’s understandable why she hates evolution.

That’s a huge difference.

He does assume after presenting his explanation that it’s valid, but that because he was making a point. In other words, THE POINT was what the piece was about.


160 posted on 03/23/2012 4:45:22 PM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Pray Continued Victory for our Troops Still in Afghan!)
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To: tacticalogic

He does not argue that her behavior is acceptable. He says that if it fits his theory of her behavior that it’s understandable why she hates evolution.

That’s a huge difference.

He does assume after presenting his explanation that it’s valid, but that’s because he was making a point. In other words, THE POINT was what the piece was about.


161 posted on 03/23/2012 4:45:35 PM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Pray Continued Victory for our Troops Still in Afghan!)
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To: betty boop

Well then, if evolution cannot be explained EXCLUSIVELY by physical means - there must obviously be SOME physical means involved. Could you present them in a non-”Darwinist” argument for us?

Please explain to me what physical means are involved in the evolution you accept.


162 posted on 03/23/2012 6:47:36 PM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send GOP to DC to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism)
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To: betty boop
Again as to what DNA does.

DNA has two types of basic sequences. Coding sequences and binding elements. Coding sequences have the information on how to make essential and useful molecular machines. Binding elements bind to these useful molecular machines to control when and where those machines get made.

E.coli has a gene to make a molecular machine to digest lactase: and that machine gets made when/ and only when another molecular machine detects lactose and adopts a shape where it can bind to the useful binding element upstream up the gene to make the ‘enzyme’ to digest lactose.

In that example the “marching orders” are given by a signal that detects lactose.

As to where a bacteria gets the information on how to digest lactose in the first place - bacteria can evolve their digestive enzymes to digest almost any energy rich molecule. Given a bit of time and money I could get a bacteria that previously couldn't digest lactose to ‘discover’ how to do so through natural selection of genetic variation in an environment that would select for lactose digestion.

163 posted on 03/23/2012 7:00:04 PM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send GOP to DC to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism)
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To: xzins
He does not argue that her behavior is acceptable. He says that if it fits his theory of her behavior that it’s understandable why she hates evolution.

According to the theory, she hates evolution because she perceives herself as a loser.

The argument is then made that I should also hate evolution, for the same reasons she does.

What kind of advice is that?

164 posted on 03/23/2012 7:19:29 PM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: betty boop; xzins; HamiltonJay; Moseley
Thank you so very much for those insights, dearest sister in Christ!

As you say, Sanger referred to black people as inferior. And evidently so did a number of scientists back in the day. Indeed, the linked article mentions several scientists appealing to Darwin's theory to why black people are to be seen as inferior.

165 posted on 03/23/2012 8:52:20 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: betty boop
The Son of God is the creative Word of God — Logos Alpha and Omega — that is to say, from the Beginning to the End. Thus we have First Cause (the Beginning) and Final Cause (the Purpose for which the Beginning was made), and Immanent Cause in between.

The Creation is something that unfolds in space and time — that is, it evolves from a beginning to an end. Intervening causes are constrained or "entailed" by the Final Cause, for which the Beginning was made. Immanent Cause basically refers to the intervening "guides to the system" that were loaded into the system (so to speak) in the Beginning by God's Creative Word.

This is the causal context of the Creation, or of the Universe if you prefer. It is the context within which science (and everything else) happens.

Beautifully said, dearest sister in Christ! Thank you!

166 posted on 03/23/2012 9:36:19 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: betty boop; allmendream
You say DNA is a "molecule," a physical entity. As such, it is fully governed by chemical and physical processes. Fine. But my question is: What is it that DNA does? And where does it get its "marching orders" from to do what it does?

Indeed.

The unopened letter in my mailbox is also physical. But what makes it significant compared to everything else around it which is also physical is the message the letter contains, the language of it (encoding), the syntax. But what makes it operative is that someone sent it to me, I received it, read it and am reacting because of the message.


167 posted on 03/23/2012 9:47:26 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: tacticalogic
He does not argue that her behavior is acceptable. He says that if it fits his theory of her behavior that it’s understandable why she hates evolution. According to the theory, she hates evolution because she perceives herself as a loser. The argument is then made that I should also hate evolution, for the same reasons she does. What kind of advice is that?

If you see what the message of evolution DOES to a person, you should hate it. You see the true meaning of the message reflected in the mirror of the woman who is belittled and denigrated by it. When you see how it makes her feel, how can you not hate it?

What the Black Florida student DOES with her anger is absolutely not acceptable or productive.

However, when you see what the message of evolution does to her self-esteem, how can you accept that?

Remember that this is the OFFICIAL GOVERNMENT SCHOOL, one of the symbols of authority of our society for a high school student, teaching as established FACT that the men in her life will choose the most valuable women (NOT her) and discard the least valuable women (her).... but even more than that, that this is a GOOD THING that is the essence of human progress.

Here is the official school teaching that it is GOOD for Jonatha Carr to be discarded as evolutionary trash, that the entire human race is better off without her.

If you can care at all about another human being, how can you not hate the message that has that cruel effect on her?
168 posted on 03/23/2012 9:56:47 PM PDT by Moseley (http://www.curesocialism.com)
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To: allmendream
I am a Christian and I do believe in the Creative word of God AND evolution; as do millions of other Christians. I find no contradiction between God using evolution as his creative mechanism involving life, just as God uses gravity and nuclear fusion to create stars and our Sun.

Would the fact that the Hypothesis of Evolution tells people whom God loves that they are evolutionary trash to be discarded on the dustbin of history be a contradiction between God and evolution?

If God loves every human being equally, even though many reject Him and this does affect their lives, would He use an evolutionary process that says some humans are more valuable than others and some are worthless trash to be avoided, so that the human race is better off without those people?

That was the point of the post. For those who want to say that believing in God is compatible with evolution, what do you say to a child of God who is told she is worthless trash in the evolutionary scheme?

The reason that people who believe in God also believe in evolution is (1) they don't want to be criticized, whereas Jesus Christ told us we must be willing to be persecuted to "take up our cross daily" and (2) they doubt God's ability to create anything. But if God created life, it takes LESS faith to believe taht God created all the living things directly. It is harder and more complicated for God to have created life through evolution.

Favoring a God-driven evolution is an attempt to make it easier to believe that God created everything.

But it merely begs a lot of more challenging questions: Who dreamed up DNA? Who wrote the rules that DNA follows? Indeed, who wrote the laws of physics?

To point to a physical world and its rules, simply obscures the next question: WHO MADE THE RULES?
169 posted on 03/23/2012 10:17:15 PM PDT by Moseley (http://www.curesocialism.com)
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To: Moseley
If you see what the message of evolution DOES to a person, you should hate it.

I didn't see "evolution" do that to her. Neither did you. You speculated that it did from "reading between the lines" of a newspaper report.

170 posted on 03/23/2012 11:04:49 PM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: tacticalogic

Because, according to evolution, you are a loser.


171 posted on 03/24/2012 5:40:22 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Pray Continued Victory for our Troops Still in Afghan!)
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To: xzins
Because, according to evolution, you are a loser.

How's that? I have a wife, and children.

172 posted on 03/24/2012 5:45:42 AM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: tacticalogic

Only the dominant ultimately are valuable.

No reason to think a less dominant now will give rise to one. As they say, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.


173 posted on 03/24/2012 5:50:50 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Pray Continued Victory for our Troops Still in Afghan!)
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To: Alamo-Girl; betty boop
The unopened letter in my mailbox is also physical. But what makes it significant compared to everything else around it which is also physical is the message the letter contains, the language of it (encoding), the syntax. But what makes it operative is that someone sent it to me, I received it, read it and am reacting because of the message.

That is an absolutely, spot-on illustration, Sister in Christ. Thank you so much.

(BTW, I'm borrowing it.) LOL.

174 posted on 03/24/2012 5:53:52 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Pray Continued Victory for our Troops Still in Afghan!)
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To: xzins
If evolution falsely teaches that "being dominant" is important, why is it important to you that you win this debate?

Asserting that you should be able to tell me what I should think and feel, and what arguments I should and should not be able to make is arguably domination, and seems to be very important to you.

175 posted on 03/24/2012 5:59:20 AM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: Moseley

The reality is that when people do not believe they are divinely created, there is only one way to “evolve. One likely outcome of this is to adopt behavior similar to that of the girl you see pictured in the video.


176 posted on 03/24/2012 6:07:49 AM PDT by MarDav
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To: tacticalogic; xzins

Okay, which ever one of you dominates the debate gets to mate with Ms. Fluke without using contraception.


177 posted on 03/24/2012 6:17:24 AM PDT by Sirius Lee (Sofa King Mitt Odd Did Obamneycare)
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To: Sirius Lee

Then I’ll concede the debate to you. Have fun.


178 posted on 03/24/2012 6:21:21 AM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: Moseley
That is not a fact - that is an invention of someone completely ignorant of what the theory of evolution actually teachers.

Genetic diversity is a good thing in evolution. There is not some “ideal” variation that is perfect in every situation - there are some variations that are ‘popular’ and some that are ‘unpopular’ given the circumstances.

As I said before and find myself in need of repeating because you do not actually deal with anything I say - just repeat your ignorant talking points:

If she actually knew what biology teaches about evolution she would know that Black people are doing just fine on an evolutionary basis. They have plenty of diversity and a growing population and plenty of mates to select from both within or without their own population group and plenty of people who will be ‘imprinted’ to desire her particular brand of beauty.

There is not ONE perfect woman that all men will want as a mate to the exception of all others. There is not ONE perfect man that all women will want as a mate to the exception of all others. There is not ONE perfect variation of a gene that will be selected for in every situation.

Try learning some actual science - then you might know a few facts about what evolutionary biology actually is.

179 posted on 03/24/2012 7:29:10 AM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send GOP to DC to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism)
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To: xzins
I'm honored you are borrowing it, dear brother in Christ! Thank you for your encouragements!
180 posted on 03/24/2012 8:51:43 AM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: Alamo-Girl; xzins; HamiltonJay; Moseley; allmendream
As you say, Sanger referred to black people as inferior.

Indeed. Thank you for the valuable link, dearest sister in Christ. It shows how science can be abused to come up with "evidence" that supports our presuppositions. A modern example would be anthropogenic global warming. Here evidence has been tampered with, suppressed, or grossly misrepresented in order to fit the conclusion the scientists in question wanted to reach.

Back at the time of the Founding, many if not most Americans did believe that blacks were somehow "inferior." This attitude, of course, pre-dates Darwin's theory by roughly 80 years. But when that theory did emerge, it was used to validate the pre-existing attitude, on the basis of "science," that blacks were "objectively" inferior....

I find it interesting that, at his death, George Washington emancipated all his slaves. When Thomas Jefferson died, he emancipated only five of his slaves — and those he freed are thought to have been his own children by Sally Hemmings. All the rest — including Sally — were not emancipated, but became part of his estate. When Jefferson died, he was massively in debt. I don't know whatever happened to Sally.

The linked article quotes Jefferson: “I advance it, therefore, as a suspicion only, that the blacks…are inferior to the whites in the endowment of body and mind.” It seems to me that "suspicion" has never been confirmed; nor I suspect is it confirmable because it just isn't true.

Which only goes to show that even a brilliant mind like Jefferson could be infected by insupportable presuppositions largely informed by prevailing attitudes in the general culture that are fundamentally false.

The point is, Darwinism if anything seemed to justify these insupportable presuppositions, in time giving "intellectual cover" to the goals of the eugenics movement (Galton, Sanger, et al.).

And the rest, as they say, is history.

Thank you so much for writing, dearest sister in Christ, and for the link to Amanda Thompson's illuminating article, "Scientific Racism: The Justification of Slavery and Segregated Education in America."

181 posted on 03/24/2012 10:01:03 AM PDT by betty boop (We are led to believe a lie when we see with, and not through the eye. — William Blake)
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To: allmendream; Alamo-Girl; xzins; HamiltonJay; Moseley; exDemMom
Given a bit of time and money I could get a bacteria that previously couldn't digest lactose to ‘discover’ how to do so through natural selection of genetic variation in an environment that would select for lactose digestion.

Just a couple of questions, dear allmendream:

Would that be in a controlled environment — i.e., in a laboratory setting? Is what goes on in a laboratory setting necessarily indicative of what goes on in nature (i.e., in an uncontrolled environment)?

Are you using bacteria — microscopic, single-celled organisms which do not have either a membrane-enclosed nucleus or other membrane-enclosed organelles like mitochondria — as a proxy for all biological systems in nature, in particular of the most highly complex one we know about, human beings?

It appears from what you wrote that the "marching order" signals are all triggered locally. I.e., they are the effects of local causes. For a bacterium, this may be good enuf.

But what happens with the astronomically more complex higher life forms? Do you believe that the behavior of bacteria really sheds light on the organization of these higher life forms? It seems clear to me that such organization can only be accomplished by a non-local cause, one that coordinates and governs the entire system, not just the behavior of the system's components.

In short, assuming you can do as you claim in the above italics — and I really don't doubt this — what relevance does it have for the understanding of complex biological systems in nature? All the bacteria studies can do is to demonstrate local-cause behavior. It sheds no light on the complexities involved in the organization and governance of higher-order biological systems in nature.

Or so it seems to me. FWIW.

Thank you so much for writing, allmendream!

182 posted on 03/24/2012 10:39:14 AM PDT by betty boop (We are led to believe a lie when we see with, and not through the eye. — William Blake)
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To: Alamo-Girl; xzins; allmendream
The unopened letter in my mailbox is also physical. But what makes it significant compared to everything else around it which is also physical is the message the letter contains, the language of it (encoding), the syntax. But what makes it operative is that someone sent it to me, I received it, read it and am reacting because of the message.

What a marvelous analogy, dearest sister in Christ!

My suspicion is DNA gets its "marching orders" from a non-local cause. If so, the successful communication of information from the non-local source to the receiver is critical. Shannon Information theory specifies a universal model that describes this process.

And of course, information — the message successfully received — is not a physical quantity....

Thank you so much for your splendid observation!

183 posted on 03/24/2012 11:08:52 AM PDT by betty boop (We are led to believe a lie when we see with, and not through the eye. — William Blake)
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To: allmendream; Alamo-Girl; xzins; HamiltonJay; Moseley; exDemMom; metmom; Matchett-PI
...there must obviously be SOME physical means involved. Could you present them in a non-”Darwinist” argument for us? ... Please explain to me what physical means are involved in the evolution you accept.

I can't say that I have spent a whole lot of time working on a "scientific" alternative to Darwin's theory of evolution. Mainly I've been looking for evidence that the theory really doesn't hold up, on evidentiary and epistemological grounds. In any case, I am neither a working nor a theoretical scientist, merely a student of the history of science, going back to the ancient world and forward.

Darwin's theory calls for gradualism in evolutionary change — which the fossil record doesn't really support. Then when this became more or less generally acknowledged, attempts were made (e.g., punctuated equilibrium) to obviate the question of why the fossil record does not demonstrate the predicted gradualism. Talk about moving the goal post!

But this right there is a major reworking of Darwin's theory. That is, evidently, the theory had to be "fixed" in order better to conform with the evidence we do have.

For myself, I am vastly more interested, not so much in how species change over time, but in what actual biological organisms in general are and how they are organized. In other words, I'm not interested what biological organisms "look like" and how they "change over time," but in what makes them alive in contradistinction to inorganic, non-living systems in the world.

Darwin's theory is absolutely of no help on this question. And certainly I do not subscribe to this description of the evolutionary process:

“Chance alone is the source of every innovation, of all creation in the biosphere. Pure chance, absolutely free but blind, is at the very root of the stupendous edifice of evolution. The central concept of biology … is today the sole conceivable hypothesis, the only one compatible with observed and tested fact. All forms of life are the product of chance….” — Jacques Monod, Chance and Necessity, 1971

Having said that, the "evolution I 'accept'" would have to conform to my expectation that all living things consist of the material and immaterial.

WRT the "immaterial": This category includes both natural laws and informational processes. The material refers, of course, to physical matter out of which living bodies are formed.

Of course, since Einstein, we know that "matter" is energy in a particular form.

And also of course, that was not the way Darwin regarded matter. His theory is predicated on Newtonian mechanics, in which "matter" is analogous to teensy billiard balls, and all causation is "local." What natural selection "locks in" comes at the end of a "blind, random" process.

Yet biological systems — and biological functions — seem to be organized by means of non-local cause(s), and — rather than merely random processes — are purposeful processes. That is, they represent systems of causal entailment that appear to serve a natural purpose or goal, or what in philosophy is called a final cause. Of course, Francis Bacon — usually credited as the father of the scientific method — banished final cause from science back in the 16th century.

Be that as it may, I do not think it is possible to answer the question, "What is life?" unless science puts final cause back into its tool kit.

Anyhoot, it appears that homo sapiens sapiens has changed very little, if at all, since around 40,000 B.C. Looks like "stasis" at work here, not gradual evolutionary change....

Just some thoughts, dear allmendream. FWTW.

Thank you so much for writing!

184 posted on 03/24/2012 1:37:20 PM PDT by betty boop (We are led to believe a lie when we see with, and not through the eye. — William Blake)
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To: tacticalogic

Actually, I’m arguing that God loves you as you are, and that evolution says by and large you’re probably a failure.


185 posted on 03/24/2012 5:31:13 PM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Pray Continued Victory for our Troops Still in Afghan!)
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To: Sirius Lee

I’m married.


186 posted on 03/24/2012 5:35:18 PM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Pray Continued Victory for our Troops Still in Afghan!)
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To: xzins
Actually, I’m arguing that God loves you as you are, and that evolution says by and large you’re probably a failure.

Evolution says that everyone who has successful children is a success, by evolutionary standards. Do you find it somehow insidious that learing about it might encourage people to aspire to that?

187 posted on 03/24/2012 8:37:43 PM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: betty boop
Thank you so much for those fascinating insights on Jefferson and the contrast to Washington, dearest sister in Christ!

That a brilliant man like Jefferson could buy into racism is disturbing to say the least.

It is interesting that the scientists of the day saw exactly what they were looking for which reminds me a lot of Popper's analysis of the would-be scientists of his day (Freud and Marx.) And of course of today's Anthropogenic Global Warming scandal.

It doesn't exactly build confidence in scientific observations which lack the ability to be falsified - i.e. theories with great explanatory power but which cannot be put to rigorous tests.

188 posted on 03/24/2012 9:04:03 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: Alamo-Girl
That a brilliant man like Jefferson could buy into racism is disturbing to say the least.... It doesn't exactly build confidence in scientific observations which lack the ability to be falsified — i.e. theories with great explanatory power but which cannot be put to rigorous tests.

Indeed, it is troubling.

That Jefferson could buy into racism must have something to do with "the human condition," and not so much the quality of his intelligence....

Thank you ever so much for sharing your thoughts, dearest sister in Christ!

189 posted on 03/24/2012 9:29:01 PM PDT by betty boop (We are led to believe a lie when we see with, and not through the eye. — William Blake)
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To: betty boop; allmendream
allmendream Given a bit of time and money I could get a bacteria that previously couldn't digest lactose to ‘discover’ how to do so through natural selection of genetic variation in an environment that would select for lactose digestion.

betty boopIt seems clear to me that such organization can only be accomplished by a non-local cause, one that coordinates and governs the entire system, not just the behavior of the system's components.

I agree! New systems would require engineering the information content of DNA (genetic code) - the message itself, i.e. more than environmental changes alone. Wimmer, for instance, started with the information content to synthesize the polio virus.

A greater challenge for those who would provoke evolution by environmental changes would be to provoke a single cell organism to become multi-cellular, differentiating cells by function or system (e.g. endocrine, cardiovascular). Better yet, provoke the organism to create a new body plan or new system.

Even so, if the organism always responds in the same way to the same provocation it would be more appropriately called an adaption - speaking to the robust capability of the genetic code itself, i.e. to adapt to environmental changes, rather than a novel mutation that happened to work well.

Thank you so much for your wonderful essay-posts, dearest sister in Christ!

190 posted on 03/24/2012 9:54:05 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: betty boop
That Jefferson could buy into racism must have something to do with "the human condition," and not so much the quality of his intelligence....

I agree.

Thank you so much for all of your wonderful insights and encouragements, dearest sister in Christ!

191 posted on 03/24/2012 10:07:39 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: betty boop
Indeed, what is it exactly that Darwinist theory actually predicts?

It is exceedingly difficult to make any predictions based on theories about any man, whether he is Darwin or someone else.

The theory of evolution, however, is a fantastic predictive tool. Before I can use it to make any predictions, however, it would be helpful to know exactly what I am trying to make predictions about.

192 posted on 03/24/2012 10:41:43 PM PDT by exDemMom (Now that I've finally accepted that I'm living a bad hair life, I'm more at peace with the world.)
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To: tacticalogic

Evolution, of course, takes a long view rather than a limited one. Therefore, your having children is no more significant than a passenger pigeon having children 200 years ago.


193 posted on 03/25/2012 2:47:53 AM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Pray Continued Victory for our Troops Still in Afghan!)
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To: xzins
Evolution, of course, takes a long view rather than a limited one. Therefore, your having children is no more significant than a passenger pigeon having children 200 years ago.

So you think it would be insignificant if you parents had no children?

194 posted on 03/25/2012 10:37:18 AM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: tacticalogic
Evolution, of course, takes a long view rather than a limited one. Therefore, your having children is no more significant than a passenger pigeon having children 200 years ago.

If they were still having children, there would still be passenger pigeons. One passenger pigeon having children 200 years ago might meant there would still be passenger pigeons today. One person can make a difference in the lives of many, for many generations, and their offspring, and theirs. Evolution teaches that each and every one of our children presents an almost unlimited potention in the long view.

195 posted on 03/25/2012 10:53:06 AM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: tacticalogic

Excuse. ‘potention’ - ‘potential’


196 posted on 03/25/2012 10:54:27 AM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: xzins

The woman in the article is apparently angry because she thinks “evolution” “kills black people”. Evolution doesn’t kill black people. It does explain how by promoting and adopting abortion, sterilization, homosexuality, and leaving the children they do have un-nurtured and unprepared for life they can eventually do it to themselves.


197 posted on 03/25/2012 11:55:23 AM PDT by tacticalogic ("Oh, bother!" said Pooh, as he chambered his last round.)
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To: tacticalogic

It would call us to begin a discussion about time. :>)


198 posted on 03/25/2012 5:24:12 PM PDT by xzins (Retired Army Chaplain and Proud of It! Pray Continued Victory for our Troops Still in Afghan!)
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To: betty boop
You say DNA is a "molecule," a physical entity. As such, it is fully governed by chemical and physical processes. Fine. But my question is: What is it that DNA does? And where does it get its "marching orders" from to do what it does?

Technically speaking, DNA acts as information storage and does not actively "do" anything.

DNA has been described as the decryption key that "selects" for the proper information (and description) relevant to express a particular biological entity — everything from bacteria to daffodils to man — from a non-local source.

I have no idea who would have described DNA that way. It is not a "decryption key." It is more analogous to a blueprint, except that it is messy and prone to error. A small amount of DNA is exactly analogous, letter for letter, to RNA. Enzymes attach to those parts of the DNA and make the RNA in a process called transcription. The RNA is then processed--chunks of it are cut out and discarded, and the remaining RNA is spliced back together. The amount of discarded RNA dwarfs the part that is kept. Some of the RNA molecules code for proteins through the triplet code--each triplet of three letters signifies an amino acid, which are connected in a process called translation. Near those parts of the DNA that code for RNA are control elements, which tell enzymes where and when to attach. Other parts of the DNA have nothing to do with protein or RNA; as far as we can tell, they take up space. And that's all they do.

Trying to give a full description of the role of DNA within the cell, and all the various controls of transcription and translation, and all the other things that I did not mention, is impossible here. You can read the Wikipedia article for an overview.

When I said that DNA is a messy blueprint, I meant just that: imagine a book with only four letters, and in over half of the book, those letters are placed completely randomly. It is also prone to error: the DNA letters spontaneously become damaged, and certain things (like UV light) damage DNA in very characteristic ways. There are repair enzymes, which are not 100% efficient; as a result, the older you get, the more errors accumulate in your DNA.

What I have described here is more applicable to eukaryotic DNA: the DNA of bacteria and archaea is far more compact, with very little in the way of unused space-filling DNA.

The main thing to remember about DNA and all of the interactions between it and the other molecules that make up a cell is that there is no intelligence guiding its interactions. Every process that occurs inside a cell is strictly a chemical/physical process. Every cellular process can be replicated chemically outside of a cell. Cells don't care if you stick DNA from other species inside them; yeast cells will just as readily use human genes as they will their own. Despite the physicochemical basis of cell function, the one thing I cannot do is make an unalive cell into a living cell.

And I think I'm getting kind of wordy and missing the point I was trying to make. It's late...

199 posted on 03/25/2012 8:48:10 PM PDT by exDemMom (Now that I've finally accepted that I'm living a bad hair life, I'm more at peace with the world.)
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To: betty boop
For myself, I am vastly more interested, not so much in how species change over time, but in what actual biological organisms in general are and how they are organized. In other words, I'm not interested what biological organisms "look like" and how they "change over time," but in what makes them alive in contradistinction to inorganic, non-living systems in the world.

Being a biochemist/molecular biologist, and having grown probably billions of cells for experimentation, I can confidently say that I do not know what it means for them to be alive. I have seen that living cells can be removed from a dead animal (or dead person): what does that mean? I don't know. Henrietta Lacks died years before I was born, yet her cells are still alive in labs worldwide. Does that mean that Mrs. Lacks is stuck on earth, or can we assume that her spirit moved on?

There really are questions that science cannot answer. I prefer not to think about them too much; I like to know answers, and that means sticking with those questions that *can* be answered.

Darwin's theory is absolutely of no help on this question. And certainly I do not subscribe to this description of the evolutionary process:

“Chance alone is the source of every innovation, of all creation in the biosphere. Pure chance, absolutely free but blind, is at the very root of the stupendous edifice of evolution. The central concept of biology … is today the sole conceivable hypothesis, the only one compatible with observed and tested fact. All forms of life are the product of chance….” — Jacques Monod, Chance and Necessity, 1971

The "chance" that Monod spoke of really is not as random as you might think. Within the context of evolution, chance is more like rolling dice: the result is random, but it will always be constrained by the physical nature of the dice. You will never roll dice and get an ice cream cone, for instance. You will always see a number of pips, falling between n=the number of dice and 6n. DNA has four letters: those letters can be interchanged for each other, or letters can be added or subtracted. There really is nothing else that can happen. The effect of those letters changing depends on where they are; if they are in a protein coding gene, they can change the protein--but not always--and the change may cause the protein to be more, less, or equally functional. If a change in function is the result, it can be advantageous, disadvantageous, or neutral to survival. All random, yes, but within very narrow constraints.

Having said that, the "evolution I 'accept'" would have to conform to my expectation that all living things consist of the material and immaterial.

Of necessity, science is firmly entrenched within the realm of the material. Within the scientific community, we are way beyond debating whether the theory of evolution best describes the known facts and has sufficient predictive power; we're busily adding details and refining what we know. We will never get to the point where we can address metaphysical questions with evolution, or any other science.

Even if we could reach the point where we can assemble a living thing in the lab, from scratch, what would that mean? If we could produce an organism that had all the characteristics of the first living thing, what would that mean? I don't think that would answer what life is (in the metaphysical sense) at all.

200 posted on 03/25/2012 9:36:35 PM PDT by exDemMom (Now that I've finally accepted that I'm living a bad hair life, I'm more at peace with the world.)
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