Skip to comments.Burden of Proof: Why Most American Evangelicals Reject Long-Earth Evolution
Posted on 05/11/2012 10:56:54 AM PDT by ReligiousLibertyTV
click here to read article
Thanks so much for your very kind words, I hugely appreciate them.
My schedule sometimes allows adequate time to do a thought-out response here, and that's time I enjoy and consider well spent.
When you consider my arguments in larger context, remember I am making the case for something called "theistic evolutionism", and that is the teaching of most Christian denominations.
So this is not "believer versus anti-believer".
Curiously, annalex continues to pretend that his (I assume "his" not "her") views are not based on religion, but rather on pure science.
I don't believe that for a second, and I'm anticipating this now lengthy discussion will eventually bring out the truth of it.
Anyway, thanks again!
Then you have not been paying attention, since I've posted the same or similar comments here innumerable times.
Thanks for finally noticing.
annalex: "So is the definition of species "specimens that do not naturally interbreed" or is it "specimens that cannot produce a viable offspring regardless of conditions"?
Of course, you can look that definition up yourself -- simply type in the words "definition of species" in your address line, and up will pop any number of sites with dictionary and encyclopedia type definitions.
Here is a typical definition from Wikipedia:
So my interpretation would be more along the lines of: "sub-species which do not naturally produce viable offspring have become separate species."
For example, horses and donkeys are separate species because their forced off-spring -- mules -- are not viable in nature.
Various sub-species of Zebras -- for examples, Burchell's and Celus Zebras -- are not speparate species because they can and do interbreed in nature.
By contrast, Gevy's Zebra does not naturally interbreed with those others, and when forced (i.e., in a zoo) more often produces offspring which are not viable in nature.
This is clearly evolution "caught in the act" of species differentiation.
Please understand, the ability (or lack of ability) of sub-species to interbreed is not the only factor defining separate species.
That's because this ability (or lack of) normally corresponds to several other factors which confirm the designation of sub-species or species.
Those other factors include DNA analyses showing percentages of differences between one group's genome and another's.
So, the higher the percentage of difference, the less likely are those groups to naturally interbreed, and scientists will therefore consider them separate species.
Where exactly is the DNA dividing line between sub-species and species?
Individual species have different results, and it probably matters just where exactly these DNA mutations show up, but for, say, humans that number is less than 1%, putting for example Neanderthals right on the ragged edge between sub-species and species.
annalex: "Bonus question: Are dogs (insert a picture of a daschund and a dane here) a group of species or a single species?"
The separation of dogs from their wolf ancestors was even more recent than the separation of humans from our pre-human ancestors, and so the generation-by-generation buildup of DNA mutations has not been nearly enough to make dogs a separate species from wolves, much less from each other.
Dogs and wolves still interbreed, so by scientific definition, they are still the same species.
annalex: ""therefore, while mutations do occur in subspecies differentiation, they are not the mechanism or at least not an essential mechanism. "
True, but only up to a point.
Consider, for example, the various differences between African elephants and woolly mammouths.
Some of those differences humans could engineer simply by breeding elephants and selecting for cold weather adaptations -- i.e., longer hair, smaller ears.
But other differences could not happen until DNA mutations came along to cause them.
Precisely which changes came from natural selection and which from DNA mutations is a matter for scientific analyses to show.
And the key point to remember is: as DNA mutations build up over many generations, allowing for more and more radical adaptations among separated sub-species, so also does the difficulty of these separated sub-species to interbreed with each other.
In short: the more specialized their adaptations, the more likely they will be unable to interbreed, and thus scientists will classify them as separate species.
annalex: "It is another picture of zebras, to show you that I can post pictures too."
The abilities to quickly post photos, links, emphasis, extreme emphasis, bullet points, block quotes and yes, font colors, are all learned skills -- no DNA mutations required ;-) -- skills which improve with practice.
They can add interest and clarity to any post.
First, let's set aside the insults as being just evidence of annalex's immaturity and psychological projections.
Second, I have never used your phrase "selection of subspecies" -- it's just another of your weird terms, along with "evolution between species".
Science doesn't use those terms, and they are give-aways suggesting annalex is more religiously than scientifically motivated.
Third, the count of mutation differences among sub-species and species is not "irrelevant", as you say, rather it is the essence of what makes one species different from all others.
And that ability of scientists over the past 20+ years to compare and contrast the genomes of all species and sub-species has revolutionized our understandings of the evolutionary processes.
To pick out another example, the little Hirax and the big Manatee are both more closely related to Elephants than to any other living species.
This we know by comparing and contrasting their DNAs -- and counting the relevant mutations:
You previously posted these quotes and I responded here.
Stephen Jay Gould complained bitterly about the misrepresentations of his view by Creationists.
Gould well understood the existance of "transitional fossils" and cited examples.
And I don't know how you could find a better example of transitions than this one here -- or how anyone can look at it and still claim "no transitional fossils":
Then the evolutionists should be able to explain the difference. The advance of genetics was precisely to explain that reproduction is a copying of certain chromosomal text where gene are like letters. This discovery, along with the discovery that acquired traits do not get inherited, is what made evolution plainly unscientific.
you've now moved the goalposts even a little farther (to the good). You've singled out "advanced animals
I always restricted my skepticism to advanced animals; I am well aware of mutating microorganisms and genetically engineered crops. I also made that clarification to another poster on this thread.
could you please tell us where, exactly, in the taxonomy that speciation fails according to an engineer's statistical understanding [...] you must explain the hows and whys.
I don't know. I did not claim to have an origin of species theory. I criticize the prevailing theory as pseudo-scientific junk. That is all I am doing.
However, the method of producing offspring would seem to matter in the statistical equation, would it not? When the genome is complex, offspring is few and requires attention from the parents for a long time, the chances that the miraculous monkey with "Othello" rather than "Hamlet" written in its DNA lives, and finds another "Othello" monkey to mate with, go down.
I, too, find theistic evolution compatible with Catholicism and I am Catholic. It is evolutionists who often credit themselves with a proof that God is not "a necessary hypothesis" anymore, and bring in the anti-religion sentiment to a discussion of science. Now you did it again. I am a man. You can call me Alex. Ann is my wife.
I will get to this later. Thank you.
Sorry, but there aren't any transitional fossils. There are simply too many experts on the record to that effect. There weren't any yesterday evening, and there still aren't any this morning.
Uncle Don Carney was the most popular childrens show on the radio waves in and around NY in the heyday of radio until the day when, having finished his goodbye song and thinking the mike was off, he uttered the famous
"Well, I guess that takes care of the little bastards for another day".
I know, somebody is going to say that Snopes claims the entire story is an urban legend... My father heard the broadcast on the air and he tells me that he didn't normally listen to it but that his sister did and he'd gone to ask her some sort of a question and caught the thing as it happened; I.e. Snopes is not infallable.
Likewise, Steve Gould was a paleontologist and not an evolutionary biologist or anything of the sort. Starting from a point somewhere back in the 60s and 70s, evolutionary biology had become a dead hand over the entire field of paleontology; paleontologists simply were not being allowed to publish legitimate findings because they contradicted the dogmas of Darwinism as they pertained to the question of "intermediate fossils". And so, in order to make paleontology something which somebody could actually practice in the world, Gould, Eldredge, and a couple of others came up with what they apparently viewed as an appropriate concoction to "hold the little bastards" (how they viewed evolutionists) not just for another night, but for all time, while they went about their profession unmolested.
Now, in the automative profession, there are a certain number of unscrupulous salesmen who have devised a sort of a variant of Adolf Hitler's "big lie" principle adapted to the requirements of salesmanship, which goes thus: If I tell some potential buyer a lie so overwhelmingly preposterous that nobody with any brains or talent or even the IQ you normally associate with dogs and cats could possibly buy off on it, then my conscience is clear; I don't have to feel sorry for the guy.
This is undoubtedly the way in which Gould and Eldredge managed to construct their theory without having to worry about losing sleep over feeling sorry for anybody. The fact that PE is basically idiotic didn't even bother them since they viewed the intended audience as idiots.
Punctuated equilibria amounts to a claim that all meaningful evolutionary change has occurred amongst very small groups of animals living in isolated or closed-in areas; these creatures supposedly develop some genetic advantage and then spread out and overwhelm the larger herds of the older animals. The theory claims to resolve two gigantic problems with classical Darwinism: the total lack of intermediate fossils, and the problems of population genetics particularly the Haldane Dilemma and the gigantic spans of time it would take to substitute ANY genetic change through any large herd of animals.
Nonetheless there are a number of huge problems with PE and requiring ALL animal species to have arisen in such a way is the same proposition as requiring Custer to win at Little Big Horn every day for billions of years.
Real scientific theories (as opposed to evolution) do not require being reinvented every ten or twelve years.
But back to Gould, he was insisting on having his cake while eating it, in other words, he said what he had to to get rid of the evoloser yoke which was stifling palaeontology, and then cursed the creationists for quoting that material. That's a double game and a dishonest one.
I have a daughter named anna, so have been reading your name as anna-lex, but then wondering if maybe it wasn't some complaint against a previous an*l-ex? ;-)
annalex: "I, too, find theistic evolution compatible with Catholicism and I am Catholic.
It is evolutionists who often credit themselves with a proof that God is not "a necessary hypothesis" anymore, and bring in the anti-religion sentiment to a discussion of science."
Some comments on theistic evolutionsim:
"...Theistic evolution is not a scientific theory, but a particular view about how the science of evolution relates to religious belief and interpretation.
Theistic evolution supporters can be seen as one of the groups who reject the conflict thesis regarding the relationship between religion and science that is, they hold that religious teachings about creation and scientific theories of evolution need not contradict.
Proponents of this view are sometimes described as Christian Darwinists..."
"...This view is generally accepted by major Christian churches, including the Catholic Church, Eastern Orthodox Church and some mainline Protestant denominations; virtually all Jewish denominations; and other religious groups that lack a literalist stance concerning some holy scriptures.
Various biblical literalists have accepted or noted openness to this stance, including theologian B.B. Warfield and evangelist Billy Graham...."
"...Theistic evolution holds that the theist's acceptance of evolutionary biology is not fundamentally different from the acceptance of other sciences, such as astronomy or meteorology.
The latter two are also based on a methodological assumption of naturalism to study and explain the natural world, without assuming the existence or nonexistence of the supernatural.
In this view, it is held both religiously and scientifically correct to reinterpret ancient religious texts in line with modern-day scientific findings about evolution.
St. Anselm described theology as "Faith seeking understanding"
and theistic evolutionists believe that this search for understanding extends to scientific understanding.
"In light of this view, authors writing on the subject, such as Ted Peters and Martinez Hewlett, say that
Your ability to look the truth straight in the face and then lie about it says nothing about the Truth, and everything about you, FRiend.
Here are some transitional fossils:
Words such as "false" "wrong" "error" do not attribute motive.
Discuss the issues all you want, but do not make it personal.
...But back to Gould, he was insisting on having his cake while eating it, in other words, he said what he had to to get rid of the evoloser yoke which was stifling palaeontology, and then cursed the creationists for quoting that material.
That's a double game and a dishonest one."
First, I don't accept any of your name-calling slanders against Gould as valid.
Gould was obviously bitter at the way Creationists had misconstrued his words.
Here is the link to my previous quote of Gould.
And here to Gould's entire article.
Second, punctuated equilibrium is simple common sense, regardless of your personal attacks on Gould:
Whenever a species has perfectly adapted to its environment then nearly every mutation which actually effects it must necessarily be negative, and so natural selection will weed it out.
And as long as a species interbreeds among all its members, then it can remain basically unchanged for many, many generations.
Only when a sub-group is isolated in a changed environment, and forced to either adapt or die out, can evolution (descent with modifications and natural selection) have major effects over relatively shorter time periods.
Yes, a well-adapted large population can change over time, more or less randomly, in what's called "genetic drift":
So, how much of evolution is driven by
But considered logically, wouldn't a separated sub-species suffering natural selections from a changing environment be most likely to produce more changes over the shortest time periods?
Gould was PRETENDING to be bitter at the way creationists were quoting him, and they were quoting him correctly. In real life, there is a terribly easy way to avoid being quoted as having said something:
First, curiously, I'd never even heard the term "Quote Mining" until you used it in post #161 above, but I see now that it is common practice among Creationists, and has been complained of for many years:
Second, your claim that Gould lied and was only "PRETENDING to be bitter" is beyond ridiculous since:
Gould intended his idea of "Punctuated Equilibrium" precisely to explain that dearth (but not total absence) of "transitional fossils" (quoting from your post #144):
The obvious truth of the matter is that every fossil is transitional between its ancestors and descendants, and that much of the alleged "stasis" is simply our inability to read the DNAs of bones long since turned to rock.
We simply can't say for certain, just by looking at fossils, whether two similar looking creatures were of sub-species which could interbreed, or of separate species which could not.
If they were separate species, then much of the alleged "stasis" disappears, and what we really see is just the results of relatively stable environment.
When an environment doesn't change much, then neither do creatures which inhabit it.
You did. My comment was referring to the post I was responding to, in which I only found that aspect in need of a reply.
my interpretation would be more along the lines of: "sub-species which do not naturally produce viable offspring have become separate species."
OK. Then there is no argument: according to this definition that third kind of zebra is a new species. But the definition is flawed: if you define species by their behavior in mating, then dogs are also not a single species, because big dogs and small dogs do not naturally interbreed: the hydraulics and the mechanics don't work. Also - as I noted before more than once, -- humans, too, have breeding preferences which they do not cross other than in "captivity" of some kind, i.e. are forced to or exchange reproductive products through things like sperm banks.
The definition of species, in my mind, needs to include other factors: can the specimens be bred in a lab? do they look alike? does the offspring itself reproduce? These are all factors generally recognized as a part of a definition: Species problem.
According to the latter, all these zebras are breeds of the species zebra.
Note, too, that this quadrille about definitions does not help the evolutionist myth. Sure one can define species so that they "evolve" all the time. But then you discover that maybe they do "evolve" according to your particular definition, but that "evolution" still confines the "evolved" specimens to a boundary that is not crossed. Evolution postulates that bona fide species evolve into species different in many ways. Further, the evolutionary hypotheses speculates that genera boundaries are crossed as well (e.g fins become legs, front legs become wings, etc.). So your zebra example falls still short: you simply adapted your definition of species to be narrow enough for it to show "speciation".
Dogs and wolves still interbreed, so by scientific definition, they are still the same species.
They interbreed under special conditions: in a lab, involving feral dogs, in captivity, etc. They do not naturally interbreed when mates of their own kin are available. I agree they are the same species, but so are the three zebras.
But other differences could not happen until DNA mutations came along to cause them.
But they are mutations inside the genome of an elephant or of a dog. They may help in artificial selection, but they do not work across species or at least across related fuzzy group you insist on calling separate species.
This would, indeed be a good avenue of research to pursue for someone interested in proving macro evolution. Start with a dog, and make a cat. Or the other way around. Or anything that is a non-dog and itself can breed. That would prove that random mutations with selection produce something selection alone could not produce.
That would also be what the scientific method calls for: test your theory with experimentation.
If I did not use correct terms I apologize. Is the meaning that I put in the terms I used clear to you from the context of my posts? If it is not, I repeat: I am not interested in examples of selection (natural or artificial) that lead to a new breed inside a species. I am interested in an example of one species evolving through random mutations to a point where under favorable environmental conditions (again, natural or artificial) a selection of a different species occurs. For example, a manatee is clearly a different species from an elephant. So breed me a manatee out of an elephant and prove this thing once and for all.
Note that "comparing and contrasting the DNA" is the thesis that is in need of a proof; it is not by itself a proof. I can easily see that a manatee and an elephant have features that are similar. So? They are similar creatures, so their genomes must be similar too. You repeat the same mistake Darwin made, except he looked at the shapes of some beaks and you look at the DNAs. Similarity of features does not prove evolutionary relationship between the species.
I agree that theistic evolution is solid theology, but it still awaits a scientific proof that we in fact have evolution.
What exactly is your problem with biological classifications into breeds, sub-species, species, genera, family, order, class, phylum, kingdom & domain?
These are all scientific classifications, each has criteria and every living thing is assigned its classifications according to those criteria.
So, if you wish to debate whether a certain creature belongs in this breed or that sub-species, it's a debate you can have -- with scientists who specialize in those issues.
I note, to pick an example, that African Elephants are not just a separate species from Asian Elephants, they are a separate genus, and that while African Elephants consist of two different species, Asian Elephants have only one species, but four sub-species.
Sub-species? Species? Genera? Where are the scientific dividing lines, you might ask?
Clearly these are matters for scientists to establish or debate, but the basic idea is that "species" is the rough dividing line between those groups which can interbreed and those which cannot.
In the case of elephants, fossil and DNA evidence shows African and Asian elephants split over 7 million years ago, and after 7 million years they are separate genera, which do not interbreed.
Contrast the case of dogs which were split from wolves only about 15,000 years ago, and which do readily interbreed.
Dogs are classified into breeds, together a separate sub-species from wolves.
Now consider normal DNA mutations, let's say at 50 per generation.
Among elephants over 7 million years of separation, we're looking at about 35 million mutations or over 1% of the elephant genome.
And that 1% is enough to physically prevent African and Asian Elephants from interbreeding.
By contrast, dogs over a mere 15,000 years of separation from wolves would accumulate only .01% mutations in their DNAs -- not enough to prevent interbreeding.
I ask again, what exactly is your problem with biological classifications?
annalex: ""According to the latter, all these zebras are breeds of the species zebra."
According to who? According to you personally?
Well, isn't that special?
Science has methods for classifying things.
I prefer scientific classifications.
In scientific classifications, all Zebras belong to the genus Equus, and are divided among two sub-genera, three species and seven living sub-species.
If you wish to see them all re-classified you'll need to discuss that with the "scientific classification board". ;-)
annalex: "Further, the evolutionary hypotheses speculates that genera boundaries are crossed as well (e.g fins become legs, front legs become wings, etc.).
So your zebra example falls still short: you simply adapted your definition of species to be narrow enough for it to show "speciation". "
There are no physical boundaries -- "boundaries" are a religious idea, not scientific -- in science the only real "boundary" is whether some group can interbreed with another, and even that, as you've noticed, is not so firmly fixed -- i.e., interbreed under which conditions, exactly?
So no species "crosses a boundary", it simply evolves, slowly, slowly, one generation after the other, until by various methods scientists can begin to see signs of separate breeds, then sub-species, species, genera, etc.
No "boundaries", just continuing evolution -- or if you prefer, "punctuated equilibrium".
And truly major changes do not happen at the breed, sub-species or even species levels.
The fossil record and DNA analyses show major changes happening over millions, tens of millions of years.
annalex: "I agree they are the same species, but so are the three zebras."
I'll refer you again to the "scientific classification board", and if they agree that you have a better classification system than they developed, I'll accept their and your judgment on the matter.
But if for some strange reason they don't agree with you, then I'll go with their judgment over yours, FRiend. ;-)
Seriously, who outside a scientific specialist would ever even care whether Zebras fall into one genus with two sub-genera, three species and seven sub-species -- as scientists tell us -- or whether they are all just one species with numerous sub-species, according to the "annalex classification system"?
annalex: "But they are mutations inside the genome of an elephant or of a dog.
They may help in artificial selection, but they do not work across species or at least across related fuzzy group you insist on calling separate species."
There you go again with that "across species" talk!
When creatures evolve, none of them -- zero, zip, nada -- know anything about a "species boundary" they are somehow not allowed to "cross".
Where did you get that idea?
I'm telling you, it's not from science -- it's some weird notion you have, and nothing to do with reality.
Species simply evolve (descent with modifications and natural selection) and adapt as best they can in changing environments.
They don't stop evolving just because they've crossed the "annalex species boundary".
annalex: "This would, indeed be a good avenue of research to pursue for someone interested in proving macro evolution.
Start with a dog, and make a cat.
No need, it was already done, by God, roughly 42 million years ago when He split up the Family of Miacids (primitive carnivours) into various carnivorous Orders including cats and wolves.
So 42 million years of evolution separate cats from dogs, and that will not be repeated in a lab anytime soon.
But, the actual DNA mutations, generation by generation, just might be reconstructed experimentally in a super-computer, in effect working backwards through time to genetically recreate the common ancestors.
Interesting thought... hmmmmm... let's see, if I were in charge of the scientific enterprise, I think I'd put that the "to do" list right after they complete the task of mapping out the DNA genomes of every living creature.
annalex: "That would also be what the scientific method calls for: test your theory with experimentation.
I'm sure, if you wish to design and propose a scientific experiment, there will be some government agency with money to fund it. ;-)
Exactly, and, with manatees, you'd spend a lot of time in Florida, win-win.
On your main part, I think that the classifications currently adopted by "science" or whatever it is your cult calls itself, are adopted specifically to support the evolutionary hypothesis. There may very well be no esstablished definition of the boundary that exists and through which neither natural selection or even artificial selection, with or without mutations, does not cross. Roughly, that boundary is species -- defined as those capable of producing viable and reproducing offspring at least in the lab.
The idea that species have to be able of producing offspring not only in the lab but also in the wild, naturally -- is a flawed definition because you then allow in factors that are behavioral and not purely genetic. Conveniently for you it allows to call breeding speciation when it is convenient.
So the evolutionists need to produce a clear example of speciation by the above criterion.
It is true that your hypothesis postulates that this happens very slowly, so a direct experiment is not feasible. But first, it is not my problem; second, with the instrumentarium of genetic engineering on hand perhaps you can take a manatee and produce a non-manatee within a couple of decades. That would be a better use for your evolutionists' money than giving it to lawyers to "prove" your theories in a courtroom. We are Americans -- we can do it if it can be done. I propose, it cannot. But I am willing to wait.
By no recognized definition is "science" a "cult".
By no possibly accurate accusation is "science" my "cult."
So your continuing use of these false accusations says nothing about science or me, and a lot about you, FRiend.
But, yes, biological classifications certainly do support the now many-times confirmed Theory (not hypothesis) of Evolution.
Indeed, recent decades have seen biological classifications revised & overhauled in light of many DNA analyses showing that some creatures are more closely related (i.e., hirax, elephant, manatee) and other less so (i.e., Giant Pandas and Red Pandas) than had been previously understood.
"annalex": "There may very well be no esstablished definition of the boundary that exists and through which neither natural selection or even artificial selection, with or without mutations, does not cross.
Roughly, that boundary is species -- defined as those capable of producing viable and reproducing offspring at least in the lab.
You will have a moment of awakening -- the intellectual light will come on (and hopefully not blind you) -- when you finally realize, there is no physical boundary to be crossed.
There's no scientific evidence for a "boundary", there's no hypothesis or theory of why a "boundary" should exist.
It's just not there.
And that's why evolution can happen -- one mutation at a time, one natural selection at a time, generation after generation, for thousands, then millions, then tens of millions of generations.
At a certain point, these DNA changes will begin to discourage separated sub-species from interbreeding with each other, and over much longer times, will actually prevent the possibility of species or genera from interbreeding, even in a zoo or laboratory.
That's what "evolution" is all about -- there's no "revolution" in "evolution", no "storming the gates" to "cross species boundaries" -- it's all just one-mutation-at-a-time generation by generation, until natural selection finds features which improve a species survival.
And that's the lesson of all those examples mentioned here: Zebras, Elephants, cats & dogs, Pandas.
Each has different
"annalex": "The idea that species have to be able of producing offspring not only in the lab but also in the wild, naturally -- is a flawed definition because you then allow in factors that are behavioral and not purely genetic."
Your "definition" here makes no sense, and does not correspond to scientific classifications.
I'm guessing it's just a straw-man you put together to support your argument, right?
Why else would you ignore actual definitions?
"annalex": "So the evolutionists need to produce a clear example of speciation by the above criterion."
What criteria? And why would they "need to"?
Does nature itself not already provide endless examples?
"annalex": "...second, with the instrumentarium of genetic engineering on hand perhaps you can take a manatee and produce a non-manatee within a couple of decades."
Since you are obviously not serious in proposing a trick, will you accept as a serious answer the definition of "non-manatee": any creature which cannot successfully interbreed with wild manatees?
If so, then the object could be achieved fairly quickly simply by artificially modifying a "non-manatee's" genetics to make them infertile.
More seriously, my understanding of scientific "state of the art" today is: attempting to record and analyze DNAs of every living creature.
Also, DNA modifications are being made for agricultural purposes, modifications which themselves can produce new species.
But there is no effort (that I know of) to, in effect, create entirely new DNA and then "grow" something from it.
Logic suggests this might eventually happen, but nothing to date reports it has.
Indeed, if you consider reported attempts to "resurrect" the Woolly Mammoth, none sound particularly "hi-tech".
So the only conceivable way to simulate millions of generations of evolution would be as some kind of super-computer decoding program which works on DNA analyses of different creatures, and attempts to evolve "backwards" to what would have been the DNA of their ancient common ancestors.
A bit far-fetched sounding, may not see it in our life-times... ;-)
I don't argue about definitions. If you (*) want an idiotic definition of "species" that makes taxonomy dependent on sexual behavior, go ahead. The human homosexuals will be ecstatic. I am here to tell you that a boundary exist, -- no matter how fast you move definitions, -- which cannot be crossed through random mutations. When you see the light, -- or rather the dark hole that evolutionism is, -- you can call that boundary Annalex. It kind of sounds Latin, doesn't it?
why would they "need to"?
Because their hypothesis and cult object is that species evolve from other species in a way that the new species is, overtime, radically different form the original: does not produce viable offspring even in a lab, looks different, -- like an elephant and a manatee. Not like zebra 1 and zebra 2 that you consider a proof of something.
will you accept as a serious answer the definition of "non-manatee": any creature which cannot successfully interbreed with wild manatees?
If you followed and understood the objection to the evolutionary hypothesis you would know the answer. The non-manatee must not interbreed with a manatee even in a lab, but interbreed and produce viable offspring that does likewise, with the new species of non-manatees. To have a different look and behavior, -- remember, the claim is that evolution produced such visibly different creatures as manatee and an elephant and a hairy rat, -- would be nice too.
Hypotheses need an experimental proof, -- that's what makes storytelling a science.
(*) Nothing personal. "You", not "thou". You were not expressing any individual research here, did you?
And you define this alleged "boundary" as what, exactly?
And your physical evidence for this supposed "boundary" is what, exactly?
And your scientific hypothesis which explains why there should be such an alleged "boundary" is what, exactly?
And your scientific confirmations for this hypothesis, confirmations which could turn it into a recognized scientific theory, are what, exactly?
And the names of the scientists, and their scientific qualifications, who found the physical evidence, proposed the scientific hypothesis and then confirmed it, are who, exactly?
And the peer-reviewed scientific literature reporting and discussing this amazing "boundary hypothesis" is to be found where, exactly.
Of course, the real answers to all those questions are "none", "nobody" and "nowhere" because, because, because this alleged "boundary" is not scientific at all, it's a religious idea.
Isn't it, FRiend?
The evidence is absent that any known Species Proper evolve into another Species Proper. It is then is a boundary by laws of nature.
The experiment to falsify this is easy to define: pick the original population, inseminate and manipulate the embryos randomly, emulating a random mutation. Adjust the climate to favor a certain developing feature. Let the sick die and repeat insemination and gene alteration with the healthy adult specimens. Make control inseminations of healthy specimen with the original species. Observe the core population stable, and control inseminations progressively less successful, to the point of becoming impossible.
If this experiment is successful, it will prove the foundation of the evolutionary hypothesis: that given time and changing environment, random mutations will produce a new Species Proper better suited for the changed environment.
Prove me wrong by experiment; not by calling in cult authorities.
Well, first of all, you've "called in" no "authorities" at all, "cult" or otherwise.
So what you express is simply your opinion, and no doubt your religious belief, though for some reason you wish not to admit that.
Remember, the US Constitution's First Amendment guarantees your right to believe whatever you wish regarding religious subjects, and so there is no legal requirement -- zero, zip, nada -- for you to accept as true whatever scientist might say on evolution, or on anything else.
In this regard at least, it's still a free country.
But that's not quite the end of the story, especially for those whose rejection of Evolution Theory supports their religious beliefs.
Because, in case you forgot, while the First Amendment allows you to believe whatsoever you might wish, the Ninth Commandment requires you to tell the truth about it.
And your labeling of normal, ordinary working scientists as "cult authorities" is simply not truthful, and no matter how misguided you've been in life, you can't fail to know that, can you?
OK, now let's look at the merits of your claims...
annalex: "The boundary is a population, let's call it Species Proper, that can interbreed."
There are no "boundaries" on a species, it is simply a population which can interbreed.
When sub-populations (i.e., sub-species) get separated and evolve over time to the point where they can no longer interbreed, then we call such population a separate species.
Among examples mentioned here, Zebras and Elephants consist of populations science classifies as "sub-species", other groups considered "species" and still others in separate "genera."
And when you analyze the DNA of these various categories, what you find is that those sub-species which can interbreed have much more similar DNA than those which cannot.
So the obvious scientific conclusion is that sub-species with more similar DNAs share more recent common ancestors than those species and genera with less identical DNAs.
In short, a simple rule can be observed: the more similar the DNAs, the more recent was the common ancestor, and the more likely is successful interbreeding.
As DNAs become more and more dissimilar, then interbreeding becomes more and more difficult, until at some point -- i.e., African and Asian Elephant genera -- interbreeding is impossible.
Interbreeding experiments to test this rule have been done innumerable times, and always hold true.
Indeed, scientists use such data to help determine whether different populations are just breeds & sub-species, or actually different species & genera, etc.
annalex: "The evidence is absent that any known Species Proper evolve into another Species Proper.
It is then is a boundary by laws of nature."
In fact, evidence is everywhere in nature -- of different similar animals (i.e., Elephants, Zebras) in various breeds, sub-species, species, genera, etc.
I think it takes a willful act of blindness not to see it.
annalex: "The experiment to falsify this is easy to define:"
The "experiment" you define is conducted in nature, by God, every day, every generation and over many millions of years.
Yes, there's no physical evidence suggesting that natural evolution in large creatures happens on time scales of less than many thousands of generations.
But abundant evidence suggests separated populations (breeds, sub-species) continue to evolve until interbreeding becomes difficult and finally impossible.
annalex: "If this experiment is successful, it will prove the foundation of the evolutionary hypothesis: that given time and changing environment, random mutations will produce a new Species Proper better suited for the changed environment."
God has been running that experiment for untold millions of years, and the results we can see: before any two populations evolve into separate species which can no longer interbreed, they first change to become separate breeds (i.e., dogs) which look different but do eagerly interbreed.
Then over time, breeds change into different sub-species which grow more reluctant to interbreed, before they finally evolve to separate species which can physically no longer interbreed.
That's what physical evidence shows us, and it's what Evolution Theory explains.
So what exactly is your problem with it?
I have not seen any actually presented by the Evolutionists. You, for exampe, gave me the zebra example about breed selection inside a species, that only becomes an example of speciation by carefully choosing the definition of a species to fit the mythology.
Yes, there's no physical evidence suggesting that natural evolution in large creatures happens on time scales of less than many thousands of generations
That should have closed the argument for anyone interested in science rather than in storytelling.
But abundant evidence suggests separated populations (breeds, sub-species) continue to evolve until interbreeding becomes difficult and finally impossible
Yes, and then the boundary that prohibits further evolution is reached and no speciation happens. That a train goes from Boston to New York in no prove it also goes to San Francisco.
So what exactly is your problem with it?
That evidentiary it is false.
Throughout this thread you've invented mythical terms for things which don't exist in the real world.
Among those are:
So regardless of what results breeders & ordinary scientists (aka "evolution cult authorities") achieve in laboratories, the "annalex species boundary" excludes any evidence of "Species Proper" violations.
My response is: your terms and their definitions are not scientific.
annalex from #178, referring to experiments in interbreeding among different sub-species, species & genera:
"I have not seen any actually presented by the Evolutionists.
You, for exampe, gave me the zebra example about breed selection inside a species, that only becomes an example of speciation by carefully choosing the definition of a species to fit the mythology."
First, I gave no examples defined as "breed selection inside a species" -- that is another of your weird expressions, which you use to avoid the scientifically accurate descriptions of evolution: 1) "descent with modifications" and 2) "natural selection".
Second, the scientific definition of different "species" is what it is -- groups which cannot normally interbreed, and/or produce non-viable offspring.
So, if that definition doesn't match up with the "annalex Species Proper", how is it the fault of scientists?
Examples of results of interbreeding attempts are mentioned in standard references which discuss the differences between sub-species, species and genera.
Typically "sub-species" readily interbreed and different "genera" cannot, while "species" interbreed only under human controlled conditions.
On this thread we've already mentioned examples of Zebras, Elephants, cattle, and bears among others.
Here's the summation: Instead of a hard and fast "boundary" there's a wide range of increasing difficulty interbreeding between sub-species, species and genera.
And even among certain genera, the imaginary "Species Proper boundary" would not apply, for example cattle (genus bos) plus bison (genus bison) = the viable "beefalo".
annalex referring to evidence of natural evolution operating over many millions of years:
"That should have closed the argument for anyone interested in science rather than in storytelling."
And exactly what scientific rule says scientists can't deal with evidence which spans more than a few thousand years?
annalex: "Yes, and then the boundary that prohibits further evolution is reached and no speciation happens.
You have in no sense defined or provided scientific evidence of a "species boundary", and so it remains just a myth in your mind.
In reality, scientific evidence of speciation is found in every large biological group.
Only willful ignorance refuses to see it.
The definition of the boundary is in my post 176.
In the same post you will find a description of an experiment that could falsify the boundary hypothesis.
This is, by the way how science is done: by advancing a falsifiable hypothesis and then seeing if it matches all the observed facts. Not by adapting definitions to suit the available evidence, pretend that observable facts (namely, selection inside species and evolution of primitive creatures) miraculously prove hypothesis that reach beyond these observable facts, and refer to authority when your magic tricks are called into question. Evolution is a pseudo-science, -- a cult.
There is no serious definition of a biological "boundary" in post 176.
Even the alleged "experiment" intended to "falsify" an idea that is not even defined -- your "experiment" is ridiculous since, among other reasons:
What can be done on larger creatures is detailed analysis, using living examples, of exactly what causes speciation -- why do some breeds and sub-species interbreed readily, while others do not?
When precisely does interbreeding begin to become difficult, and when exactly does it become impossible?
It would be interesting to learn, and conclusions are totally obvious: the more identical are DNAs of breeds or sub-species, the easier it is to interbreed.
Correspondingly, the more DNA mutations separating one species from another, the more difficult and finally impossible will be attempts to interbreed them.
And once we estimate, from careful observation, the average rate of mutations per generation (i.e., circa 50 in humans), then it is possible to calculate how many mutations and generations of separation are needed to make interbreeding impossible, species by species.
annalex: "This is, by the way how science is done: by advancing a falsifiable hypothesis and then seeing if it matches all the observed facts."
The above is an hypothetico-deductive method.
Each step is subject to peer review for possible mistakes."
annalex: "Not by adapting definitions to suit the available evidence, pretend that observable facts (namely, selection inside species and evolution of primitive creatures) miraculously prove hypothesis that reach beyond these observable facts, and refer to authority when your magic tricks are called into question.
Evolution is a pseudo-science, -- a cult."
As always, here you deny the first verified fact in evolution: descent with modifications.
So your words, especially "cult", do describe the alleged "annalex species boundary", but not the scientific Theory of Evolution.
Indeed, legitimate references to "scientific authority" are simply reports on peer-reviewed work completed over many years.
That's how real science works.
So what is your problem with science?
Whether two specimens can produce a viable offspring in a lab is a good and simple definition. That is your boundary.
Why it exists: because random mutations are more likely to break an existing genome than create another viable genome: see “Hamlet” randomly becoming “Othello” through random copying errors.
That the experiment will take too long: not my problem, and with genetic engineering you might find ways to accelerate it. If you cannot stage any such experiment then you do not have a solid scientific proof. Too bad — stop then pretending that you do.
Your “peer-reviewed work” does not seem to make logical sense and can only defend itself by demeaning the opponents. It’s a cult, unlike real science.
Nature is not the same as a lab.
A "boundary" which exists in nature can be broken under laboratory conditions.
Species which do not interbreed in nature can be forced in a lab.
And are those offspring "viable"? What is your definition of "viable".
Viable-in-the-lab is not the same as viable-in-nature.
Indeed, genetic science advances every day, and interbreeding which was not possible, say, 25 years ago might today be routine.
So your alleged "boundary" keeps moving -- your goal-post is in constant motion.
That's why your alleged "boundary" is a total mirage.
And why do you even posit it?
What possible reason could you have for imagining something which clearly doesn't exist, and has no reason to even want to exist?
It makes no sense -- certainly not scientifically.
Theologically, of course I understand it.
Theologically it makes perfect sense, since your imaginary "boundary" could define the biblical idea of "kinds".
But there's no scientific evidence to support it.
The scientific reality is not some hard-and-fast "boundary", but rather a sliding scale of increasing difficulty to interbreed.
As I've explained now many times here, most "breeds" (i.e., of dogs) interbreed enthusiastically, while many "sub-species" interbreed only reluctantly, and related species do not interbreed except under forced conditions (i.e., a lab).
Moving up the scale, most genera cannot even be forced to successfully interbreed (i.e., African & Asian elephants), although in a few cases they do -- i.e., "beefalo".
The relevant point is this: a new "species" is created -- in your warped language "a species boundary is crossed" -- whenever previously interbreeding sub-species become so different they no longer interbreed in nature.
Simulating such a descent with modifications in a laboratory would be as simple as changing some critical DNA to prevent interbreeding of sub-species, and so by definition make a new species.
Whether such an "experiment" has ever been done I couldn't say, but what would be the point?
In nature such changes can take millions of years, and we can already see exactly what happened by comparing & contrasting DNA of different species.
annalex: "Your peer-reviewed work does not seem to make logical sense and can only defend itself by demeaning the opponents.
Its a cult, unlike real science."
I accept your claim here as being nothing more than a woe-filled cry of angst against a science that you loathe and totally misunderstand.
But, if you can produce real examples of actual scientific reports which do what you claim, I'll try to be a good therapist and explain them logically.
The offsprings of interbreeding survive to maturity and are themselves capable to breed under the same conditions, i.e. at least in the lab, and form a colony that does not dwindle for many generations under controlled climate conditions.
Viable-in-the-lab is not the same as viable-in-nature.
Indeed, this is why it is an experiment that allows for compressed timescale. For example, if evolution from species proper to another species proper occurs in specially chosen climate and with artificial insemination, most people would agree that it would be a proof that real-time evolution is also possible, even though in real time it would be much slower.
Simulating such a descent with modifications in a laboratory would be as simple as changing some critical DNA to prevent interbreeding of sub-species
Well, it would depend of what kind of evolution you set out to prove. If you are proving the evolution with random mutations, then you would have to make your mutations perhaps accelerated, but they should also remain random: the intervention directed at getting a particular feature turned off or on would not be a valid experiment.
If, however, you want to prove a weaker hypothesis: that evolution is possible if someone directs it, then of course you can direct your mutations in the way that suits your goals. You still have to show that the descendant species, while not interbreeding, are themselves each viable: produce offspring and form a viable colony. You also have to somehow explain what had directed the mutations in real life.
And why do you even posit it?
Why, because setting aside some speculation how zebra 1 and zebra 2 are somehow "evolution in motion", the direct observation of mammals and birds is that their species are stable: you can only produce examples of speciation by fudging the definition of species, and at any rate you can only point to very similar animals. It ix natural to conjecture, as I do, that species proper do not evolve one to another at all: there is a boundary that does not get crossed.
Theologically it makes perfect sense [...] cry of angst
If evolution were real science you would not need to psychoanalyze your opponents. You would simply use facts and logic.
I have cited before examples of evolution "caught in the act" of speciation -- half way in the middle of forming a new "species boundary" (your term) which prevents them from producing viable offspring.
Of the three species of Zebras, to repeat, two can produce viable hybrids, but the third cannot -- at least not consistently.
Attempts to interbreed produce unusually high levels of miscarriage and still births.
Might some of those Zebra hybrid offspring be viable?
I don't know, but this example clearly illustrates the point that speciation in nature is not a simple matter of one mutation crossing a "species boundary".
Rather, it's the accumulation of many mutations, generation after generation, which leads to a long process among separated sub-groups of increasing difficulty in interbreeding.
So, using your term, a "species boundary" is what forms whenever sub-groups accumulate so many different mutations they cannot produce viable offspring.
By scientific definition then, where there was one species, now there are two, and this is illustrated in countless natural examples.
annalex: "For example, if evolution from species proper to another species proper occurs in specially chosen climate and with artificial insemination... "
Your term "species proper" is meaningless.
The scientific definition of "species" includes the ability to interbreed in nature.
When two different sub-species no longer interbreed, then they are classified by science as two separate species.
So that is your "species boundary."
And the ability of sub-species to interbreed is largely a function of the number and type of DNA mutations which accumulate generation by generation, typically over thousands or millions of generations.
Of course, simulating thousands or millions of generations in large creatures in a lab is impossible in real time.
And not necessary to confirm Evolution Theory, since we can see, through DNA analysis, exactly which mutations separate one group from another.
annalex: "Well, it would depend of what kind of evolution you set out to prove.
If you are proving the evolution with random mutations..."
I don't personally believe that anything is ever truly random, but rather God at some level directs everything.
Exactly where, how and why we will never really know, but the appearance of randomness in nature is one just tool God uses to enact His will, in my humble opinion.
So it's ultimately irrelevant to me exactly how "random" various mutations may or may not have been.
However, you have to ask this question: if God wishes for things to appear "random", would He not in His infinite wisdom have created them to actually be random?
In reference to alleged "randomness", I would invite you to look up the mathematical ideas in chaos theory, and particularly the notion of a "strange attractor".
In that language of directed randomness, God is the Great Attractor, who makes what appears random conform to His plans for the Universe.
That is my theological belief, and it leads me to suspect that we will never find scientifically the "Hidden Hand of God" within the "random" mutations that created all life on Earth, and eventually, us.
That's why as far as science is concerned, by definition of the word "science" these DNA changes were all just "random".
And I have no problem with that -- let scientists do their scientific "thing", as long as it's honest work, it's all good stuff as far as I'm concerned.
annalex: "If, however, you want to prove a weaker hypothesis: that evolution is possible if someone directs it..."
That is hardly a "weaker hypothesis", it's a confirmed fact as demonstrated by innumerable examples of humans working to develop new breeds for agricultural and other purposes.
Selective breeding and careful hybridization alone produce astonishing new varieties, and there is no imagining what might eventually result from DNA engineering.
So "directed evolution" is not a "hypothesis", its a fact.
annalex: "direct observation of mammals and birds is that their species are stable: you can only produce examples of speciation by fudging the definition of species, and at any rate you can only point to very similar animals.
It ix natural to conjecture, as I do, that species proper do not evolve one to another at all: there is a boundary that does not get crossed. "
As now demonstrated many times, all of that simply is not true:
annalex: "If evolution were real science you would not need to psychoanalyze your opponents.
You would simply use facts and logic."
When you claim science is a "cult" and working scientists are "cult authorities" then you have left the reservation of sanity, and entered the realm of psychoanalysis -- tell us poor dear, what is your problem, did some scientist drop you on your little head as a child, and that's why you can't think logically any more?
That is all language of disrespect, regarding which a certain wise Individual once directed we should "do unto others...", FRiend. ;-)
I did't not say it was simple. If your third breed of zebra eventually retains the ability to produce viable offspring and a stable colony within that breed, and completely loses the ability to interbreed with both other two in a lab setting, you will have speciation. So far, you have a breed that is distant from other two, but still the same genome, since interbred offspring is possible.
When two different sub-species no longer interbreed [in nature], then they are classified by science as two separate species.
So that "scientific" definition cannot be used to define the boundary (it is also logically meaningless because it depends on sexual behavior rather than on the genome). I defined the boundary that, I postulate, does not get crossed differently. Deal with it.
my theological belief
The point remains that there are two experiments possible, one with random mutations (for example using a lottery machine) and the other with directed mutations. Each will be useful to turn evolution into something resembling science, but each will prove a different thing compared to the other.
humans working to develop new breeds
Breeds, yes. Species, no, at least not species in the sense I prefer to use the term. Please pay attention to the matter being discussed.
Repeating your fantasies does not constitute a proof from observation. Breeds are fluid, species are not.
you claim science is a "cult"
I don't. I love, understand, and respect science. Evolution is not science. Once upon a time, -- when genetics were not known, roughly at the time of Darwin, -- it was a plausible scientific hypothesis, made in absence of real knowledge. Now, it is nothing but a cult. One of the characteristic of a cult is that it uses camouflage to look like something respectable, in this case, to look like science. Another is that the arguments are not done straight: for example, the same questionable claim (that breeding is speciation) is repeated as if it is not in dispute. And here you try to slander me as an enemy of science. Please find on this thread where I called science a cult, or retract your slander.
Obviously you don't understand, and that has to be at least half of your problem here.
I've provided you with numerous links to high-school level explanations of what biological sciences are all about, but you haven't read them, have you?
And the result is, you don't understand the difference even between a breed & sub-species, much less species & genera, do you?
Really, if you are going to pretend you have "scientific" objections to evolution, you should at least study some basic science, FRiend.
So (sigh) here we go again:
There are no "breeds" of Zebras in nature.
The lowest level of differentiation among Zebras is a sub-species.
Among Zebras there are five living sub-species of plains-zebras, two of mountain-zebras and one separate species, Grevy's.
The related Zebra sub-species can interbreed in nature, but those of different species do not.
So "species" classifications do not mean "impossible" to interbreed, only increasingly difficult.
But even among different genera in the same family interbreeding is not always impossible, example: "beefalo" hybrid from genus bos cattle and genus bison buffalo.
But this is only done in captivity, never seen in nature.
You might put it this way: what does not exist ("species boundary") among man-made breeds, begins with a slight reluctance to interbreed among natural sub-species, considerable difficulty among different species in the same genus, near impossibility among different genera in the same biological family, and total impossibility among different families in the same order.
As organisms become more-and-more separated by evolution, interbreeding becomes more-and-more difficult -- a "species reluctance" becomes a weak "species boundary" which eventually becomes an impenitrable "species border".
annalex: "...but still the same genome..."
Really, you need to crack a book and learn something of what you keep talking about.
"Genome" is not a biological classification.
Start by studying this.
annalex: "So that "scientific" definition cannot be used to define the boundary (it is also logically meaningless because it depends on sexual behavior rather than on the genome).
I defined the boundary that, I postulate, does not get crossed differently.
Deal with it."
You have really defined nothing, so there is nothing to "deal with".
But I have now explained -- over and over -- such reality as might correspond to some notions of "reluctance" or "boundary" or "reinforced border" preventing different species from interbreeding.
But even the previously "reinforced border" separating different biological families in the same order has already been penetrated by genetic engineers.
Today there are farmers raising genetically modified livestock bred to produce chemicals that come from genes of organisms in an entirely different biological Kingdom.
The point, yet again, is: in the long run, there are no "boundaries" or "borders", but only a question of the degree of difficulty in producing "viable" offspring.
annalex: "The point remains that there are two experiments possible, one with random mutations..."
No, not "possible".
Sure, I can also design an "experiment", requiring a very long lever that could be used to prove the claim by that ancient Greek Archimedes (circa 250 BC) that:
And I can stick my head in the sand and shout to all the world that until such an "experiment" is actually performed, then Archimedes is a liar, his ideas are just a "cult" and he nothing more than a "cult authority"!
And that would make as much logical sense as what you propose.
annalex: "Breeds, yes. Species, no, at least not species in the sense I prefer to use the term.
Please pay attention to the matter being discussed. "
No FRiend, you pay close attention -- to actual words with actual definitions.
In any reasoned conversation, especially on science, you don't get the right to invent your own words with your own definitions.
You have to use the accepted language that's given us, or no serious conversation is possible.
And I'm sorry to say it, but until you study and learn the real language of science, all you're doing is jabbering nonsense here.
annalex: "Breeds are fluid, species are not."
Species are just as "fluid" as breeds, but with more difficulty and over longer periods of time.
annalex: "I love, understand, and respect science."
No, as you've demonstrated here in post after post, you know nothing -- zero, zip, nada -- about real science, and you despise what you think you do know.
annalex: "And here you try to slander me as an enemy of science.
Please find on this thread where I called science a cult, or retract your slander."
Your refusal to learn, and repeated mis-characterizations of even the grade-school basics of biological classifications, demonstrates beyond reasonable doubt that you despise science itself, not "just" evolution.
Your claim that evolution is a "cult" is a slander on all of science -- since evolution is an integral part of science, and cannot be separated without destroying all of science -- and that makes you, in your word, an "enemy" of science.
You should retract all of it, and apologize for being so misguided.
Then crack a book. Learn something, FRiend. ;-)
"species" classifications do not mean "impossible" to interbreed, only increasingly difficult.
Very well. So prove to me that evolution of a subspecies (what I previously called "breed") leads to a different species, such that the breeding inside the new species is natural and leads to a healthy population, while the breeding with the old species is completely impossible. I postulate, you cannot.
No, not "possible".
You mean the experiment I defined is not possible? I agree, that's the whole point.
refusal to learn, and repeated mis-characterizations of even the grade-school basics of biological classifications,
Yawn. I don't need to learn your voodoo to know that it is voodoo. Go ahead, take a manatee and make an elephant, like you make those genetically modified crops. It is not a complicated challenge. When you do, wake me up.
You won't pay attention, you just won't learn what science is all about.
You obviously hate science and care only about attempting to discredit it.
In this case, you have not defined an "experiment", not even close.
First of all, the scientific definition of "species" does not include the term "completely impossible".
As I demonstrated in post #187 virtually nothing is "impossible".
What happens is that as evolution more-and-more separates one sub-species from another, interbreeding becomes more difficult and the offspring less viable in nature.
That would be your "species boundary" coming more-and-more into effect.
The examles of Zebra species and sub-species serve perfectly well to illustrate.
However, in captivity, in a laboratory, your "species boundary" is far less solid.
There species can be interbred and the offspring might be "viable" in a zoo.
And today, with genetic engineering, there is virtually no limit on inter-species interbreeding, since totally unrelated genes can be mixed and reproduced.
So nothing is truly "completely impossible", which means there is no real "species boundary."
Second, your request for an "experiment" which in nature could take millions of years is not serious science.
It simply shows how much you loathe and despise real science.
annalex: "You mean the experiment I defined is not possible?
I agree, that's the whole point."
And thus helps confirm my conclusion that you hate science.
annalex: "I don't need to learn your voodoo to know that it is voodoo."
Now you've added to your list of anti-science epithets: "cult" and "voodoo."
Really, I don't have a problem with your hating science, as long as you are honest about it.
If you think science is all a crock of nonsense, that is your total right, guaranteed in the US Constitution's First Amendment.
So believe whatever you wish to believe.
But if your are dishonest about it -- pretending to speak as some kind of scientist yourself, proposing "scientific experiments", claiming to have "scientific objections" to whatever you loathe, all the while demonstrating you actually know nothing -- zero, zip, nada -- about real science; well then I'll have an interest in your shenanigans, and will make an effort to point out errors, FRiend.
Really? Fine, let the new species have the same probability of successfully mating in a lab with the old as a manatee today has with an elephant today, and let each species have the same probability of producing a healthy offspring as a manatee has with a manatee and an elephant has with an elephant.
What happens is that as evolution more-and-more separates one sub-species from another, interbreeding becomes more difficult and the offspring less viable in nature. That would be your "species boundary" coming more-and-more into effect
Aha. Show me, -- not by waving hands in the air and cute pictures but with experiment, like an adult scientist. Take a manatee, make an elephant. Take a zebra, make a monkey. Something. Please.
your request for an "experiment" which in nature could take millions of years is not serious science.
Not my problem, and I did not ask to observe it in nature. I said, use genetic engineering and accelerate the mutations. And if you cannot prove your hypothesis, call it what it is, a hypothesis.
point out errors
I am grateful for pointing any errors of mine, but I think you could not overcome my evo-skepticism in substance. Further, there has been so much switching of definitions, substituting one claim for another, psychologizing your opponent, arguing over words, segueing into theology, and arguing from authority, that I think the real damage to science is being done by your side.
FRiend, just this week I learned a brand new term, never heard it before.
In that case the term was applied to political discourse, but equally applies, I think, to a large portion of your postings here.
The term is: "word salad"
"Word salad is a mixture of random words that, while arranged in phrases that appear to give them meaning, actually carry no significance.
The words may or may not be grammatically correct, but the meaning is hopelessly confused."
You keep producing "word salads" which have no real meanings, certainly no scientific meanings.
You're not really defining a scientific "experiment", you're just stringing random words together, in a "word salad", and even your intentions are not scientific.
You are obviously hoping to make a point (a ridiculous point) by using scientific sounding words to discredit science.
But your fundamental problem is that you obviously understand nothing -- zero, zip, nada -- about real science, and so all you can really do is produce random "word salads".
annalex: "Take a manatee, make an elephant.
Take a zebra, make a monkey. Something. Please."
You haven't understood even a single word of what's been posted here, have you?
So all you can do is blather "word salads" which make no sense scientifically.
In your examples, fossils and DNA suggest that evolution produced manatees and elephants from common ancestors which lived about 50 million years ago.
So evolution itself did not "Take a manatee, make an elephant," even after 50 million years.
Why then would you "demand" to see such a magic trick performed in a lab in just a few years?
Fossils and DNA suggest that evolution produced zebras and monkeys from common ancestors which lived about 100 million years ago.
So evolution itself did not "take a zebra, make a monkey," even after 100 million years.
Why then would you "demand" to see such a magic trick performed in a lab in just a few years?
annalex: "Not my problem, and I did not ask to observe it in nature.
I said, use genetic engineering and accelerate the mutations.
And if you cannot prove your hypothesis, call it what it is, a hypothesis."
And still more word salad.
"Genetic engineering" does not "accelerate the mutations".
What it can do is produce hybrids by taking entire DNA sequences from one species and "gene splicing" them into another.
This process could eliminate any "species boundary" that exists in nature.
And what exact "hypothesis" do you wish to see proved?
Descent with modifications and natural selection are not scientific hypotheses, they are often-confirmed facts.
The evolution of species over millions of years is also not a scientific "hypothesis", but rather a theory confirmed by innumerable observations of fossils, DNA and other supporting evidence from different branches of science -- i.e., geology.
annalex: "Further, there has been so much switching of definitions, substituting one claim for another, psychologizing your opponent, arguing over words, segueing into theology, and arguing from authority, that I think the real damage to science is being done by your side."
I have not "switched definitions".
I have not "substituted one claim for another".
I have not "psychologized" you in any way, except to note the weirdness of your epithets "cult", "cult authority" and "voodoo".
I have not "argued over words", I have defined them, correctly.
I have only "segued into theology" when necessary to explain the limitations of natural science -- i.e., God directed "randomness".
And, by the way, this is a religion forum, so it is entirely appropriate here to discuss science and religion together. Why do you refuse?
And how could that "do damage" to science?
I have only "argued from the authority" of truth, facts, confirmed theories, accepted word definitions, etc.
And how can that possibly "do real damage" to science?
Finally, science itself does not in the least depend on my limited abilities to defend it here on Free Republic.
Nor will your ridiculous "word salads" have any negative effect.
Here's the bottom line: the truths of science exist entirely within the natural realm, beyond which science cannot and does not extend (segue into theology if desired).
But within its own realm science is a function of what scientists produce and write about their ideas.
So, for you to scientifically dispute them, you must first learn their language, their ideas and their methods.
You can't just jabber "word salads" at them and expect to have some effect, FRiend.
confirmed by your fellow cultists and believed by your fellow cultists.
I think my position and criticism of the evolutionary hypothesis has been clear to any reader throughout the thread. Prove the hypothesis by making one species from another: one distinct species from another distinct species. Two subspecies of Zebras that still can produce viable offspring in the lab do not constitute that proof. Creatures that exist today and have similar features do not constitute such proof either: similarity does not prove genetic relation. I leave the choice of the two species to you; obviously the second species does not have to be anything that exists today, but it has be as different from species 1 as a manatee is from elephant.
The last post of yours, by the way, was another example of arguing about words rather than about substance.
That is meaningless "word salad" because:
annalex: "The last post of yours, by the way, was another example of arguing about words rather than about substance."
Precise definitions and usage of words are extraordinarily important in science, else communication amongst scientists would be impossible.
The fact that you have no understanding, and no respect for word definitions dictates the efforts I put into unscrambling your otherwise meaningless "word-salads".
annalex: "confirmed by your fellow cultists and believed by your fellow cultists."
Your continued ridiculous anti-science epithets ("cult", "voodoo"), combined with your repeated demand that science, in effect, perform a magic trick in a laboratory, help confirm my hypothesis that you misunderstand and loathe science itself.
So you may be beyond any help I could provide here, FRiend.
It is about one month and you are not past the main point of criticism that I set forth on this thread. No one argues that random mutations do not occur. Please read back my posts and figure out what the objection to your theories is.
"Natural selection", the second key element of evolution is also not a "hypothesis", it's a many-times observed and confirmed fact.
Ditto, no one does indeed. I certainly don't. Read back and find where I denied natural selection leading to breeds or subspecies, -- and that is where it has been observed "many times".
begin to meet the criteria
Now that IS a word salad. The criteria are a funny thing: they are either met or not met.
counting up the DNA changes
Or tea leaves. Have you tried tea leaves? You postulate that random mutations lead to speciation, then you count differnces in two different species and claim that these are "DNA changes" They may just as soon be simply two genomes, not related to one another.
In short, if you cannot figure out what the argument against your hypothesis is, why do you waste your time and mine? This makes true science look very, very bad.
you have no understanding, and no respect for word definitions
Well, I will appreciate corrections, but at the same time, I am not a biologist. If you cannot refute my posts other than by pointing out that here and there I used a layman's term, then again, this is what lawyers do, not what scientists do.
demand that science, in effect, perform a magic trick in a laboratory
That really takes the cake. Ever heard that in science hypotheses ARE proven by experimentation? I ALLOWED for laboratory setting to accelerate your experiment. If you instead endeavor to conduct the necessary experiments in the wild, good luck.
You have yet to make a coherent or cogent argument.
Random mutations are a confirmed fact which helps confirm evolution as a theory, not "hypothesis".
That's the reason I included this point in my list.
annalex: "Read back and find where I denied natural selection leading to breeds or subspecies, -- and that is where it has been observed "many times".
Anything often observed and confirmed is a fact, not a hypothesis.
The fact of natural selection is one foundation for the theory of evolution.
annalex: "Now that IS a word salad.
The criteria are a funny thing: they are either met or not met."
I have now many times explained the process and scientific criteria of speciation.
You have just as frequently jabbered "word salads" to the effect that you disagree and dislike scientific ideas on the subject.
In some of your more colorful language, you call them "voodoo" and "cults".
annalex: "You postulate that random mutations lead to speciation, then you count differnces in two different species and claim that these are "DNA changes"
They may just as soon be simply two genomes, not related to one another."
According to various studies there are thousands of mammal species, tens of thousands of bird, reptile and fish species and millions of other species.
In addition, thousands of extinct species have been identified from fossils.
But, no scientific fact, theory or hypothesis I know of claims that any or all of these species are not more or less distantly related.
Nor has any scientific hypothesis ever been proposed to explain how the earth might be populated by thousands and millions of unrelated species.
Occum's Razor among other ideas, suggests the simplest scientific explanation is best: all DNA driven species descended from common ancestors, some as far back as hundreds of millions of years ago.
annalex: "In short, if you cannot figure out what the argument against your hypothesis is, why do you waste your time and mine?
This makes true science look very, very bad."
Your anti-science "word salads" cannot possibly make "true science look very, very bad."
annalex: "Well, I will appreciate corrections, but at the same time, I am not a biologist.
If you cannot refute my posts other than by pointing out that here and there I used a layman's term, then again, this is what lawyers do, not what scientists do."
Interesting that you should pretend to know just "what scientists do," immediately after admitting that you are "not a biologist".
I would suggest a central disconnect in your reasoning: on the one hand you admit to no understanding of the basics of biological science (i.e., species classifications), while on the other hand you demand as "proof" of your misunderstandings of evolution theory, that scientists perform magic tricks in a laboratory, turning elephants into manatees, and zebras into monkeys.
And as long as scientists can't pull magic monkeys out of zebras, you'll insist science is all just "voodoo" and "cult".
I'm saying you speak "word salad" and thus cannot possibly harm real science.
As for my efforts here, it's likely true they waste your time, but I'm not yet convinced it wastes mine, FRiend. ;-)
annalex: "Ever heard that in science hypotheses ARE proven by experimentation?
I ALLOWED for laboratory setting to accelerate your experiment."
More "word salad."
You've got a cult. Understand the argument, then get back to me. Incantations of your belief system won't work; you've posted them a number of times already and I pointed out what, exactly, needs a scientific proof, and what is indeed an observed fact.
I’ve often heard Drosophila flies used to foil the Theory of Evolution. The argument goes that experimenters cannot genetically alter them through natural selection or even gene manipulation into a new species. Is that correct?
Word Salad = Cognitive Dissonance
Global Warming = Evolution 2.0
Word Salad = Cognitive Dissonance
Global Warming = Evolution 2.0
By my count, that's the 12th time on this thread you've called science a "cult".
In no case is the epithet accurate or appropriate, as I've pointed out.
But you continue to use it, no doubt as a substitute for serious scientific argument, suggesting that perhaps you have no serious arguments to make, and can only hurl abusive terms instead.
annalex: "Understand the argument, then get back to me."
I've already understood and posted answers to every argument and even those "word salads" you've made here.
If you disagree, then go back and find even one of your arguments that I did not post a (often lengthy) response to.
You, on the other hand, made very few serious responses to my posts here, beyond repeating such terms as "cult" and "voodoo".
Do you disagree? Then cite an example.
annalex: "I pointed out what, exactly, needs a scientific proof, and what is indeed an observed fact."
What you've actually done is just blather word-salads at scientific questions.
The "experiment" that you fantasize, and the "proof" you imagine are neither scientific nor necessary to establish evolution as a confirmed theory.
But you obviously are not interested in real science, only in spouting words ("cult", "voodoo") you hope will somehow discredit it.