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From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 21:53 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Joe Morlan reintroduced himself to talk.origins with a post of his claimed theory of creation with the subject line as "Is this a theory?" Kudos to Joe for floating this before the treeful of howler monkeys. The next few messages are messages from t.o. dealing with the topics Joe brought up. --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #99 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [98 <컴] [컴> 100] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 21:56 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36680 of talk.origins: From: david_gonda@qm.yale.edu (David Gonda) Subject: Re: Is this a theory Organization: Yale University Dept. of MB&B Date: Thu, 30 Jun 1994 22:06:12 GMT Lines: 76 In article <168_9406301000@damar.com>, Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe Morlan) wrote: > -=> Quoting I.B. Harris to All <=- > > IH> But why all this arguing about semantics? As I understand > IH> it, the scientific definition of a theory is a system of > IH> beliefs which all the available evidence supports. A law, > IH> despite the feeling of absoluteness its popular usage > IH> suggests, is simply either an initial assumption, or a > IH> consequence of the overlying theory. > > I'd be curious if anybody thinks this qualifies as a "theory." > [purported theory of creation deleted] -------------------------- In short, no. Not a scientific theory. In his 1982 opinion which found the Arkansas "equal-time" law unconstitutional, Judge William Overton described the following as the "essential characteristics of science: 1. It is guided by natural law; 2. It has to be explantory by reference to natural law; 3. It is testable against the empirical world; 4. Its conclusions are tentative; i.e., are not necessarily the final word; and 5. It is falsibiable" I think that most scientists would accept Overton's criteria as the *minimum* criteria that must be met for something to be called "science" (note incidentally that this is a much more restrictive set of conditions than those implied in Harris's definition). With regard to the criteria Overton used, your "theory" below fails as a scientific theory. First and foremost, it is not guided by natural law and cannot be explained by reference to natural law. Why did this creation event happen? How did this creation event happen? What was the mechanism? Why does creation result in the species that we see today? You say that your creation theory "predicts that life will be organized into discontinuous, reproductively isolated population (species)". Explain why, please. If I claim that an act of creation would result in a single, uniform population of one species, on what basis can we argue our respective views? When did creation happen? Why did it happen then? If species can be brought into existence out of nothing, complete, then evidence for age could be brought into existence as well (unless you can tell me what restrictions would apply to your act of "creation," and why). Thus, without any basis for knowing how or why acts of creation are restricted, any evidence for the age of the earth would be consistent with creation having occurred at any time (including last Tuesday). Note that there is absolutely no basis whatsoever with which to address my questions. Without any such basis, your theory is untestable and unfalsifiable. No matter what evidence is at hand, you can always say "well, that's the way it was created." Unless, of course, you can supply a physical basis for creation that helps us to determine the possible limitations that apply to acts of "creation" thereby giving us a basis for discriminating between possible scenarios. (Before some wag raises the objection, I believe that astrophysicists who think about the Big Bang *do* argue about its physical origin; quantum fluctuations in vaccuum, etc.) Note that I have argued that your theory is not scientific without once referring to evolution. I won't say anything about evolution, except to note that you fall into the old creationist false dichotomy of "evolution versus creation." And that you make a lot of assertions about evolution and its consequences that are simply not true, as I'm sure many others will be pointing out to you shortly. -- David Gonda Yale University Dept of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry david_gonda@qm.yale.edu [the opinions above, which are mine, are only mine, and belong to me] --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #100 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [99 <컴] [컴> 101] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 21:56 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36681 of talk.origins: From: swansont@comphy.physics.orst.edu (Tom Swanson) Subject: Re: Is this a theory Date: 30 Jun 1994 23:07:18 GMT Organization: IBM T.J. Watson Research, NY Lines: 150 In article <168_9406301000@damar.com> Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe Morlan) writes: I'd like to thank Mr. Morlan for providing an attempt at stating a theory for the gang on t.o. >---------------------------------------------------------- >THE LONG AWAITED THEORY OF CREATIONISM > >The theory of scientific creation states that all life was >created as it is now. And when, exactly, did this happen? Was all life created in a short span of time or have there been multiple creation events? One prediction of your statement is that there has been no change in any species. Since speciation has been observed, as well as other changes in species that falls short of speciation, this is falsified. The fact of artificial selection in breeding alone falsifies this contention. >The primary scientific evidence for creation is that all species >breed true. No species gives birth to new species. Lizards beget >lizards and amoebas beget amoebas. There is ample scientific >evidence that species reproduce themselves. Note that this makes >no unsupported assumptions, nor does it invoke any supernatural >entities. "Species" is, at some level, about naming and catagorizing things - semantics. From one generation to the next the differences in individuals is so small that they are of the same species. What evolution predicts is that over a long period of time these genetic changes will accumulate and that one can no longer classify the population in the same species as in an ancestral population. Or, a splinter group of a species accumulates genetic change and can no longer interbreed with the descendants of the original species (this requires some kind of isolation between the groups and, presumably, a difference in environments) SO, yes, species reproduce themselves. But the genetic makeup changes. >The Theory of Creation is thus more parsimonious than the >theory of evolution, which states that species evolve into new >species, either suddenly or by gradual steps. The theory of >evolution of new species is not supported by direct observation, >and assumes facts not in evidence. Incorrect. Speciation has been observed. The contention that there is no change in species assumes facts not in evidence. >The theory of creation is independent of the phenomenon of >microevolution which explains such things as the development of >disease or poison resistance via natural selection and >differential reproductive success. But evolution via natural >selection acts only at the level of a population while Creation >works at the inter-population level. Natural selection does not >predict or explain the diversity of life on the planet while >Creation does. You are going to have to explain this better. It doesn't make sense to me and seems to contradict your "theory". The last sentence is just plain wrong wrt evolution. One must remember that mutation is also a part of evolutionary theory - it is a source of genetic diversity. Natural selection is a filter of sorts that wees out the unviables and allows advantageous atrributes to become predominant and spread through a population. >While the exact mechanisms of Creation are unknown, the fossil >record is replete with examples of creation. New species appear, >and life itself appears suddenly in the fossil record. Without a mechanism you haven't got (much of) a theory. "sudden" appearance is a relative term. A few million years is sudden by geologic reckoning (and evolutionary reckoning as well) and the resolution of radiodating is often measured in hundreds of thousands of years. So it is hardly accurate to use the phrase "sudden appearance" unless it is in the right context. Look a little more carefully and you will find that the precursors of these species that appear "suddenly" are awfully similar - could it be that they're related? Hmmmmm. >Further research is needed to determine the mechanisms for these >well documented examples of creation, but current theory holds >that these creation events imply the existence of a creator. Note >that the existence of this creator is a conclusion of the theory >of scientific creationism and not a basic assumption or premise >of it. >--------------------------------------------------------------- > >The theory of creation as stated makes a number of testable >predictions. E.g. it predicts that life will be organized into >discontinuous, reproductively isolated population (species). The >Theory of Evolution, by itself, makes no such prediction and >there is no a priori reason why life is organized into species. Evolution predicts the existence of species because it requires genetic similarity to produce offspring. Selection will make species look/behave differently when exploiting different niches in the environment. Once you have isolation between groups you will tend to get discontinuities. >Furthermore the Theory of Creation predicts that there will be >evidence of creation events. Such evidence is abundant in the >fossil record with new species and life itself appearing at >various strata. The Theory of Evolution makes no such >predictions and fails to predict evidence of abiogenesis. In >fact, a logical extension of the Theory of Evolution predicts >that no evidence of abiogenesis will be found. Thus it is >Evolution which is falsified by the data, not Creation. what evidence of creation events other than the existence of new species (predicted by evolution)? New forms at particular strata and no extinct forms in younger strata is a *prediction* of evolution. >The Theory of Creation is falsifiable. If it were found that >life were not organized into discrete, discontinuous, >reproductively isolated populations, that would disprove >Creation. If evidence were found that life always existed, that >would falsify the Theory of Creation. This is a triviality. Your "theory" predicts what we call species, but that has already been observed. No real prediction and no chance of falsification. We need a mechanism. We need real predictions. >The hypothesized mechanism of the Theory of Creation, is that the >observed creation events imply a creator. While the exact >mechanism of these creations or the methods used by the creator >are not yet known, they are subject to further research. Current >experiments on abiogenesis and attempts to create new species >in the laboratory are the focus of current research (or should >be.) That's not a mechanism. It still boils down to "The Creator did it" Once you invoke miracles you cease doing science. Nice try, but: - It's not a theory. Only one prediction that isn't vague and that one (no changes in species) is trivially falsified. No mechanism. - Most of your predictions aren't based on the statement of the theory. Too vague. - Most of your statements about evolution are wrong. Tom Swanson | Oregon: Home af Tonya Harding, Bob Packwood OSU Physics | and the OCA. > | How proud we are. L L --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #101 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [100 <컴] [컴> 102] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 21:57 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36666 of talk.origins: Newsgroups: talk.origins From: macrae@pandora.geo.ucalgary.ca (Andrew MacRae) Subject: Re: Is this a theory (yes, but its logic is flawed and it is falsified) Date: Thu, 30 Jun 1994 23:41:35 GMT Organization: The University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada Lines: 185 In article <168_9406301000@damar.com> Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe Morlan) writes: > -=> Quoting I.B. Harris to All <=- > > IH> But why all this arguing about semantics? As I understand > IH> it, the scientific definition of a theory is a system of > IH> beliefs which all the available evidence supports. A law, > IH> despite the feeling of absoluteness its popular usage > IH> suggests, is simply either an initial assumption, or a > IH> consequence of the overlying theory. > > I'd be curious if anybody thinks this qualifies as a "theory." > It is a "theory". It also appears to be a scientific theory, because it can be falsified. However, it is vague on several key points, and more importantly, it *is* falsified. See below. > ---------------------------------------------------------- > THE LONG AWAITED THEORY OF CREATIONISM > > The theory of scientific creation states that all life was > created as it is now. > This can be tested, and even a superficial examination of the fossil record and modern organisms reveals that life has changed considerably over time. > The primary scientific evidence for creation is that all species > breed true. No species gives birth to new species. This is incorrect. See the "speciation FAQ" on the talk.origins archive (ics.uci.edu, /pub/origins), which documents some recent speciations that have occurred. > Lizards beget > lizards and amoebas beget amoebas. There is ample scientific > evidence that species reproduce themselves. Note that this makes > no unsupported assumptions, nor does it invoke any supernatural > entities. > There is an inherent "assumption" that you have not elaborated on sufficiently: the definition of a species. This is no easy matter, but at least as most biologists define them, new species have developed from other species. If, as you allude to, it is a reproductively isolated population, then your theory is clearly falsified. > The Theory of Creation is thus more parsimonious than the > theory of evolution, which states that species evolve into new > species, either suddenly or by gradual steps. The theory of > evolution of new species is not supported by direct observation, > and assumes facts not in evidence. This is incorrect. Speciation has been observed. > > The theory of creation is independent of the phenomenon of > microevolution which explains such things as the development of > disease or poison resistance via natural selection and > differential reproductive success. But evolution via natural > selection acts only at the level of a population while Creation > works at the inter-population level. Natural selection does not > predict or explain the diversity of life on the planet while > Creation does. > > While the exact mechanisms of Creation are unknown, the fossil > record is replete with examples of creation. New species appear, > and life itself appears suddenly in the fossil record. Be specific about where. "Suddenly" is also a relative term. Do you mean "instantaneously" as far as the geological record can resolve? If so, then there is no place where "life itself appears suddenly". Also, can you offer an explanation why so many major groups originate at different times? Let alone species - they appear and become extinct throughout the entire record. The vast majority present in the Cambrian (for example) are not present now, and vice-versa. > > Further research is needed to determine the mechanisms for these > well documented examples of creation, but current theory holds > that these creation events imply the existence of a creator. Note > that the existence of this creator is a conclusion of the theory > of scientific creationism and not a basic assumption or premise > of it. You have not tested multiple hypotheses. An alternative to a creator being involved in the "sudden" appearance of life (which, as pointed out above, is questionable) is that life originated by introduction from space, or that some major preservational bias changed suddenly (e.g., change in the ocean chemistry or atmosphere). You *are* making an assumption that one of these possibilities is the only correct one. > --------------------------------------------------------------- > > The theory of creation as stated makes a number of testable > predictions. E.g. it predicts that life will be organized into > discontinuous, reproductively isolated population (species). The > Theory of Evolution, by itself, makes no such prediction and > there is no a priori reason why life is organized into species. Yes, there is. It is impossible for organisms to maintain genetic homogeneity at a global scale in *all* environments. It is therefore inevitable that some population will become reproductively isolated, new species will originate, and species diversity will increase. > > Furthermore the Theory of Creation predicts that there will be > evidence of creation events. Such evidence is abundant in the > fossil record with new species and life itself appearing at > various strata. So, multiple "creations"? Is that what you are proposing? Can you provide examples of intervals and organisms? > The Theory of Evolution makes no such > predictions It does predict that in some circumstances (e.g., migration events), species will appear "suddenly". > and fails to predict evidence of abiogenesis. ? This is confusing. Do you mean it does not predict what evidence of abiogenesis will be found? Or that it fails to predict evidence that has already been found? Please be specific. More importantly, abiogenesis is a different issue from that of evolutionary theory. The two are related, but evolutionary theory deals much more with life once it is established, rather than how it initiated. > In > fact, a logical extension of the Theory of Evolution predicts > that no evidence of abiogenesis will be found. Thus it is > Evolution which is falsified by the data, not Creation. > What does creation predict? > The Theory of Creation is falsifiable. If it were found that > life were not organized into discrete, discontinuous, > reproductively isolated populations, that would disprove > Creation. If evidence were found that life always existed, that > would falsify the Theory of Creation. > There are other ways that specific models of Creation, like the one presented here, can be falsified. See above for examples. You have chosen one feature that evolutionary theory *also* explains (the existence of reproductively isolated populations), and you have chosen another feature that is impossible to determine (There is no way to tell if life has always been present somewhere. We can only tell where it is.) > The hypothesized mechanism of the Theory of Creation, is that the > observed creation events imply a creator. > While the exact > mechanism of these creations or the methods used by the creator > are not yet known, they are subject to further research. I do not think this is a necessary part of a scientific creation theory at this point, at least until you have provided one that does not fail against the evidence even *before* reaching the point of asking "how?" > Current > experiments on abiogenesis and attempts to create new species > in the laboratory are the focus of current research (or should > be.) It is. Did you see the article in the July issue of Scientific American? Rebek, J., Jr., 1994 (July). Synthetic self-replicating molecules. Scientific American, v.271, no.1, p.48-55. See some of the articles in the "speciation FAQ" for speciation "in the lab". -Andrew macrae@pandora.geo.ucalgary.ca or: macrae@geo.ucalgary.ca home page: "http://geo.ucalgary.ca/~macrae/current_projects.html" --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #102 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [101 <컴] [컴> 103] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 21:57 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36677 of talk.origins: Newsgroups: talk.origins From: david_gonda@qm.yale.edu (David Gonda) Subject: Re: Is this a theory (yes, but its logic is flawed and it is falsified) Organization: Yale University Dept of MB&B Date: Fri, 1 Jul 1994 01:04:05 GMT Lines: 43 In article , macrae@pandora.geo.ucalgary.ca (Andrew MacRae) wrote: > In article <168_9406301000@damar.com> Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe > Morlan) writes: > > -=> Quoting I.B. Harris to All <=- > > > > IH> But why all this arguing about semantics? As I understand > > IH> it, the scientific definition of a theory is a system of > > IH> beliefs which all the available evidence supports. A law, > > IH> despite the feeling of absoluteness its popular usage > > IH> suggests, is simply either an initial assumption, or a > > IH> consequence of the overlying theory. > > > > I'd be curious if anybody thinks this qualifies as a "theory." > > > > ["theory" deleted] > > It is a "theory". It also appears to be a scientific theory, > because it can be falsified. However, it is vague on several key points, > and more importantly, it *is* falsified. See below. So sorry, but I must point out that this is dead wrong. Morlan's post is *not* a theory. It make no reference to natural processes and is unfalsifiable. His so-called "predictions" do not necessarily follow from his theory, and most are simply attempts at falsification of evolutionary theory (the ol' creationist dichotomy again). The issue isn't that his theory has been falsified by the data; there was no way for it to legitimately play the game in the first place. It is vital that we continue to make this point clear if we are to keep creationist bullshit out of science classes in the US. To the best of my knowledge, the Constitution does not prohibit laws that mandate the teaching of unpopular or even falsified scientific theory; it does prohibit laws that mandate the teaching of religious doctrine, which is what all of these so-called "theories of creation" eventually reveal themselves to be. -- David Keith Gonda Yale University Dept of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry david_gonda@qm.yale.edu [my opinion, not theirs] --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #103 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [102 <컴] [컴> 104] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 21:57 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36684 of talk.origins: From: scharle@lukasiewicz.cc.nd.edu (scharle) Newsgroups: talk.origins Subject: Re: Is this a theory Date: 30 Jun 1994 21:18:16 GMT Organization: University of Notre Dame Lines: 62 In article <168_9406301000@damar.com>, Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe Morlan) writes: |> -=> Quoting I.B. Harris to All <=- |> |> IH> But why all this arguing about semantics? As I understand |> IH> it, the scientific definition of a theory is a system of |> IH> beliefs which all the available evidence supports. A law, |> IH> despite the feeling of absoluteness its popular usage |> IH> suggests, is simply either an initial assumption, or a |> IH> consequence of the overlying theory. |> |> I'd be curious if anybody thinks this qualifies as a "theory." |> |> ---------------------------------------------------------- |> THE LONG AWAITED THEORY OF CREATIONISM |> |> The theory of scientific creation states that all life was |> created as it is now. This isn't clear to me. On first reading, I thought that you meant that there was no change over time. Now it seems to me that you are merely saying that things are the way they are. And I think that this is the basic problem with the theory -- does using the word "create" add anything of substance to what you say? [...deletions...] |> The theory of creation as stated makes a number of testable |> predictions. E.g. it predicts that life will be organized into |> discontinuous, reproductively isolated population (species). The |> Theory of Evolution, by itself, makes no such prediction and |> there is no a priori reason why life is organized into species. I don't see how this theory entails that there are species. It seems to me that a Creator could create any way that He/She/It/They want/s to. |> |> Furthermore the Theory of Creation predicts that there will be |> evidence of creation events. Such evidence is abundant in the |> fossil record with new species and life itself appearing at |> various strata. The Theory of Evolution makes no such |> predictions and fails to predict evidence of abiogenesis. In |> fact, a logical extension of the Theory of Evolution predicts |> that no evidence of abiogenesis will be found. Thus it is |> Evolution which is falsified by the data, not Creation. I don't see how you can distinguish between a creation event and any other way of appearance. New species could appear by evolution, by abiogenesis, by mutations, by cross-breeding, by inheritance of acquired characteristics -- who knows what other mechanisms are possible? -- and I don't know how to tell that it is creation and not something else. As a matter of fact, couldn't it be *both* creation *and* evolution, or whatever? [...more deleted...] So, my basic problem is that you haven't described what creation is -- you haven't distinguished it from anything else -- and you haven't told us how to deduce consequences from it. -- Tom Scharle |scharle@irishmvs Room G003 Computing Center |scharle@lukasiewicz.cc.nd.edu University of Notre Dame Notre Dame, IN 46556-0539 USA --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #104 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [103 <컴] [컴> 105] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 21:58 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36698 of talk.origins: Newsgroups: talk.origins From: watson@bellatrix.sce.carleton.ca (Stephen Watson) Subject: Re: Is this a theory Organization: Carleton Home for Indigent Bit-Bashers Date: Thu, 30 Jun 1994 21:41:25 GMT Lines: 117 Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe Morlan) writes: >I'd be curious if anybody thinks this qualifies as a "theory." I'll take a fast, non-expert crack at it. >---------------------------------------------------------- >THE LONG AWAITED THEORY OF CREATIONISM >The theory of scientific creation states that all life was >created as it is now. >The primary scientific evidence for creation is that all species >breed true. No species gives birth to new species. Falsified already, if one uses the standard definition of "species". See the FAQs for examples (more on this anon). >Lizards beget >lizards and amoebas beget amoebas. There is ample scientific >evidence that species reproduce themselves. Note that this makes >no unsupported assumptions, nor does it invoke any supernatural >entities. >The Theory of Creation is thus more parsimonious than the >theory of evolution, which states that species evolve into new >species, either suddenly or by gradual steps. The theory of >evolution of new species is not supported by direct observation, >and assumes facts not in evidence. >The theory of creation is independent of the phenomenon of >microevolution which explains such things as the development of >disease or poison resistance via natural selection and >differential reproductive success. But evolution via natural >selection acts only at the level of a population while Creation >works at the inter-population level. Natural selection does not >predict or explain the diversity of life on the planet while >Creation does. Last sentence not parse. Try again? >While the exact mechanisms of Creation are unknown, the fossil >record is replete with examples of creation. New species appear, >and life itself appears suddenly in the fossil record. >Further research is needed to determine the mechanisms for these >well documented examples of creation, but current theory holds >that these creation events imply the existence of a creator. Note >that the existence of this creator is a conclusion of the theory >of scientific creationism and not a basic assumption or premise >of it. Without a more rigorous definition of "creator", this seems like an empty statement. >--------------------------------------------------------------- >The theory of creation as stated makes a number of testable >predictions. E.g. it predicts that life will be organized into >discontinuous, reproductively isolated population (species). The Falsified, as above. You *might* have better luck if you moved your discontinuity up to the family or order level. The usual technical term is "kind", but so far it lacks a rigorous definition. >Theory of Evolution, by itself, makes no such prediction and >there is no a priori reason why life is organized into species. Yes, it does. Once a lineage has split into reproductively isolated branches, they are almost guaranteed to continue to diverge. >Furthermore the Theory of Creation predicts that there will be >evidence of creation events. Such evidence is abundant in the >fossil record with new species and life itself appearing at >various strata. No. The *worst* you can say about the fossil record is that it does not completely document gradual appearances -- but it is a case of "argument from silence" to infer that the transitions therefore do not exist. (And I expect Andrew Macrae to weigh in about now to tell us that it's not even as bad as my "worst", and that there are transitions). >The Theory of Evolution makes no such >predictions and fails to predict evidence of abiogenesis. In >fact, a logical extension of the Theory of Evolution predicts >that no evidence of abiogenesis will be found. Thus it is >Evolution which is falsified by the data, not Creation. >The Theory of Creation is falsifiable. If it were found that >life were not organized into discrete, discontinuous, >reproductively isolated populations, that would disprove >Creation. Again, how does one detect these "discontinuities"? There are many fossils showing characters intermediate between two other fossils, but the determined c'ist just says "Well, that's just a third kind, not a link between the other two kinds." ICR-style Creationists reject transitional forms mostly by defining them out of existence. > If evidence were found that life always existed, that >would falsify the Theory of Creation. >The hypothesized mechanism of the Theory of Creation, is that the >observed creation events imply a creator. While the exact >mechanism of these creations or the methods used by the creator >are not yet known, they are subject to further research. Current >experiments on abiogenesis and attempts to create new species >in the laboratory are the focus of current research (or should >be.) >... "Could you continue your petty bickering? I find it most intriguing." -- | watson@sce.carleton.ca | The foregoing opinions are All My Own Work. Nyah! | "Let Justice roll, roll down like water / and righteousness like a flowing stream / 'til the morning come, and the darkness cease / and the weapons of war become the instruments of Peace" - Ken Medema, after Amos 5:24 & Isaiah 2:4 --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #105 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [104 <컴] [컴> 106] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 21:59 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36723 of talk.origins: From: dorman@park.bu.edu (Clark Dorman) Newsgroups: talk.origins Subject: Re: Is this a theory Date: 30 Jun 94 20:01:19 Organization: Boston University Center for Adaptive Systems Lines: 23 In article <168_9406301000@damar.com> Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe Morlan) writes: J> I'd be curious if anybody thinks this qualifies as a "theory." [rest deleted] Well, it could be a start to a theory but it definitely is not there yet. My problem with it is the lack of specificity about the creation itself (1 or many, timing, etc.). There will be people in this group that claim that a theory of "scientific creationism" is an oxymoron since it proposes a non-natural event, namely creation. Including me. The better you can specify the acts of creation the better, even though how the creation occurred is unknowable (do we agree on this?). Still, I would like to thank you for posting this. It is rare for anyone to even make a stab at a theory of creationism. Please pay attention to the posts that point out problems with your proto-theory (they have already started, I see) and it may develop into a real theory (likely to be immediately falsified though). Clark --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #106 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [105 <컴] [컴> 107] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 21:59 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36719 of talk.origins: Newsgroups: talk.origins From: solovay@netcom.com (Andrew Solovay) Subject: A Theory of Creation! (was Re: Is this a theory) Message-ID: Organization: The Brass Cannon Foundation Date: Thu, 30 Jun 1994 23:23:02 GMT Lines: 267 Oops. The version of this I posted had an unfortunat attribution line; Ive canceled that, and superseded it with this article. In article <168_9406301000@damar.com>, Joe Morlan writes: > >I'd be curious if anybody thinks this qualifies as a "theory." Well, if it's a "theory", I don't think it's a theory that'll keep evilutionists up at night. >THE LONG AWAITED THEORY OF CREATIONISM > >The theory of scientific creation states that all life was >created as it is now. "All life... as it is now"? Therefore, (e.g.) gonococcus was created with as much resistance to penicilin as it has now. >The primary scientific evidence for creation is that all species >breed true. How is that evidence for your "theory"? Your theory says nothing about speciation. Rather, it says that all life was created as it is now. If species didn't breed true, you could just as easily say, "The theory predicts that species won't breed true" (because then, "not breeding true" would be a facet of "what life is like now". >No species gives birth to new species. Says who? There are recent, observed, incidents of speciation. Furthermore, the fossil record abounds with incidents of speciation. (See the Speciation FAQ for details.) >Lizards beget lizards and amoebas beget amoebas. I thought you were talking about "species"? If a lizard begets a different species of lizard, well, that's speciation. And we have concrete examples of fruit flies begeting a different species (non-interfertile) of fruit fly. See the speciation FAQ. >There is ample scientific >evidence that species reproduce themselves. Actually, there is evidence of *individuals* reproducing themselves imperfectly, creating other individuals of the same species... most of the time. >Note that this makes >no unsupported assumptions, nor does it invoke any supernatural >entities. It *implies* supernatural entities (who or what did the "creating"?) And it does make unsupported assumptions, e.g. how much life has managed to change since the "creation" while still managing to be created "as it is now". >The Theory of Creation is thus more parsimonious than the >theory of evolution, which states that species evolve into new >species, either suddenly or by gradual steps. Well, the TOE states that populations change as a result of selection on individuals. One consequence of the change is that sometimes, speciation occurs. Which has been observed. >The theory of >evolution of new species is not supported by direct observation, >and assumes facts not in evidence. It is certainly supported by observation, of (e.g.) the fossil record, the structure of existing life, DNA analysis, and many other things. Consider (e.g.) the behavior of fast-breeding organisms (insects, microbes) under intense selective pressure (insecticides, antibiotics). The TOE predicts that natural selection will cause those individuals with more resistance to be more successful at reproduction, so the population will gradually become more resistant. Your theory, on the other hand, predicts that this will *not* happen, or at least *has not* happened; because life was created "as it is now". >The theory of creation is independent of the phenomenon of >microevolution which explains such things as the development of >disease or poison resistance via natural selection and >differential reproductive success. "Independent"? Your TOC claims that microevolution has never happened, because "all life was created as it is now". It therefore predicts that all organisms have always had the same level of disease or poison resistance as they currently have. Any (e.g.) historical evidence to the contrary is, therefore, evidence against your TOC. >But evolution via natural >selection acts only at the level of a population while Creation >works at the inter-population level. ??? "evolution via natural selection" operates at the level of the *individual*, or (according to some) at the level of the *gene*. (Almost) no scientist claims that it happens at any higher level, except insofar as cumulative individual selection produces changes in the population. That is, *all* changes in populations are explicable as the result of cumulative selection at the individual level or lower. Your TOC, on the other hand, predicts *nothing* about selection (at the "inter-population" level or otherwise), except that it hasn't happened (because all life was created "as it is now"). >Natural selection does not >predict or explain the diversity of life on the planet while >Creation does. Sez who? Read _The Blind Watchmaker_. Evolution does a good job of predicting and explaining the "diversity of life". Your TOC, on the other hand, does neither. It predicts that life has always been as it is now. If life is diverse now, it predicts that life was always diverse. If life is sparse, it predicts that life was always sparse. And it doesn't explain why life was created with diversity; it just says that it happened. >While the exact mechanisms of Creation are unknown, the fossil >record is replete with examples of creation. Sez who? Please give an example. >New species appear, >and life itself appears suddenly in the fossil record. Life (as it is now) occurs anything but suddenly. For a long time, there was just prokaryotic life; then all sorts of weird life (most of it nothing like "life as it is now") appears; then most of it dies out. Life "as it is now" appears gradually over hundreds of millions of years. And species seem to develop from other, existing species. Predicted by the TOE, but not by your TOC. >Further research is needed to determine the mechanisms for these >well documented examples of creation, "well documented examples of creation"? Cite the documents, please. >but current theory holds >that these creation events imply the existence of a creator. Whose current theory? Even your "TOC" doesn't say there was a creator, just that creation occured. And the prevalent "current theory" of biology doesn't invoke a creator. >Note >that the existence of this creator is a conclusion of the theory >of scientific creationism and not a basic assumption or premise >of it. Mm, yes. How about TOC #2: "All life was created, as it is now, by invisible pink unicorns (IPUs)." This theory does not state that IPUs exist. It merely states that if life exists, it was created as it is now by IPUs. We observe that life does exist. Furthermore, it exists "as it is now". Therefore, the theory conclude that IPUs exist; for how could life have been created by IPUs if they did not exist? Note that the existence of these IPUs is a conclusion of the theory of scientific pink-unicornism and not a basic assumption or premise of it. >The theory of creation as stated makes a number of testable >predictions. Yes, it predicts that there has been no change in life, for all life was created "as it is now". It is therefore contradicted by historical evidence, direct observation, and a fossil record which abundantly differs from life "as it is now". >E.g. it predicts that life will be organized into >discontinuous, reproductively isolated population (species). It predicts nothing of the kind. Rather, *because* life is "organized into discontinuous, reproductively isolated population (species)", it predicts that life has always been that way. If life were composed of a single, universally interfertile species, your TOC would, with equanimity, predict that life had always been *that* way. >The >Theory of Evolution, by itself, makes no such prediction and >there is no a priori reason why life is organized into species. It may not predict that life is organised into species. But it does *explain* why life is divided into species. Further, it explains why these species can be grouped into genuses, families, orders, etc. Your TOC does *not* explain this. If all species were created separately, there is no reason why any two species should be more like each other than like others. > >Furthermore the Theory of Creation predicts that there will be >evidence of creation events. It doesn't really predict that, but I'll give it to you anyway. So. Where is the "evidence of creation events"? I don't see any. >Such evidence is abundant in the >fossil record with new species and life itself appearing at >various strata. Again, Sez who? Your interpretation of the fossil record is not a common one among paleontologists... >In >fact, a logical extension of the Theory of Evolution predicts >that no evidence of abiogenesis will be found. Thus it is >Evolution which is falsified by the data, not Creation. HOW does the TOE predict this? The TOE does not concern itself with abiogenesis (pace deaddog). It concerns itself *only* with the behavior of imperfect replicators. It does, indeed, explain how "living" imperfect replicators can arise from "non-living" ones; but it isn't concerned with how those first imperfect replicators came to exist. Still, it's not a big problem. Imperfect replicators aren't that hard to come by. >The Theory of Creation is falsifiable. Yes, and falsified. If there were evidence that life has not always been as it is now, if new species were found to arise or existing ones were found to change (e.g. develop new immunities), that would be evidence *against* your TOC. And there is plenty of such evidence. >If it were found that >life were not organized into discrete, discontinuous, >reproductively isolated populations, that would disprove >Creation. Au contraire. If it were found that "life was not organized into discrete, discontinuous, reproductively isolated populations", your TOC would calmly predict that life has *never* been organized into discrete, discontinuous, reproductively isolated populations. No problem. >The hypothesized mechanism of the Theory of Creation, is that the >observed creation events imply a creator. Stipulated. Observed creation events do, indeed, imply a creator. Now give an example of an observed creation event. -- Andrew Solovay [PGP public key available on request] "Cottleston, cottleston, cottleston pie." -- Pooh --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #107 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [106 <컴] [컴> 108] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 22:01 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36746 of talk.origins: From: danwell@iastate.edu (Daniel A Ashlock) Subject: Re: Is this a theory Date: 1 Jul 1994 14:24:51 GMT Organization: Denver Deathbeams and Stuff Lines: 26 I stopped when I found the first problem with this theory. It's prediction that species breed true is known to be false as the result of direct observation. Ring species and observed speciation in plants seem to falsify the theory. Also the theory seems to make a pudding of explaining the various odd features of gene scans. It gives no clue that helps explain the patterns of relatedness. Evolution does: this helps pay for the added complexity of the theory of evolution. The creation theory also implied that all species that ever lived were alive together at one point. If one takes the fossil record and looks at all the species there are one comes up with a distinct lack of room. "In the beginning there was standing room only?" Would you like to prepare a refinement of this theory? -- Dan Ashlock (Danwell) danwell@iastate.edu --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #108 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [107 <컴] [컴> 109] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 22:02 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36736 of talk.origins: From: Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe Morlan) Date: 01 Jul 94 00:23:55 -0800 Newsgroups: talk.origins Subject: Re: A Theory of Creation! (was Re: Is this a theory) Organization: Damar Enterprises Lines: 358 -=> Quoting Andrew Solovay to All <=- AS> Well, if it's a "theory", I don't think it's a theory AS> that'll keep evilutionists up at night. But does it qualify as a theory? If it does, then Dr Pepper owes me $10. If not, then I need to fix it. >The theory of scientific creation states that all life was >created as it is now. AS> "All life... as it is now"? Therefore, (e.g.) gonococcus AS> was created with as much resistance to penicilin as it has AS> now. Yup. More or less. >The primary scientific evidence for creation is that all species >breed true. AS> How is that evidence for your "theory"? Your theory says AS> nothing about speciation. Rather, it says that all life was AS> created as it is now. Actually creationism = speciation. They're synonyms. AS> If species didn't breed true, you could just as easily say, AS> "The theory predicts that species won't breed true" AS> (because then, "not breeding true" would be a facet of AS> "what life is like now". A specious argument if I ever heard one. ;) >No species gives birth to new species. AS> Says who? There are recent, observed, incidents of AS> speciation. Furthermore, the fossil record abounds with AS> incidents of speciation. (See the Speciation FAQ for AS> details.) Your examples of speciation, are actually creation events. You just didn't realize it. >Lizards beget lizards and amoebas beget amoebas. AS> I thought you were talking about "species"? If a lizard AS> begets a different species of lizard, well, that's AS> speciation. AS> And we have concrete examples of fruit flies begeting a AS> different species (non-interfertile) of fruit fly. See the AS> speciation FAQ. Perfect! Just the example of creation I was looking for.... >Note that this makes >no unsupported assumptions, nor does it invoke any supernatural >entities. AS> It *implies* supernatural entities (who or what did the AS> "creating"?) And it does make unsupported assumptions, e.g. AS> how much life has managed to change since the "creation" AS> while still managing to be created "as it is now". These implications are in YOUR head, not in the theory. >The Theory of Creation is thus more parsimonious than the >theory of evolution, which states that species evolve into new >species, either suddenly or by gradual steps. AS> Well, the TOE states that populations change as a result of AS> selection on individuals. One consequence of the change is AS> that sometimes, speciation occurs. Which has been AS> observed. There is no such consequence. Evolution = a change in allele frequency in a population over any amount of time regardless of generational length. Note well: evolution is confined to one population at a time. Anything that splits into two populations is NOT evolution and does not qualify as an evolutionary phenomenon. Evolution explains allele changes in single populations only and explains nothing about speciation. Note that this is the point that Mayr makes in his rejection of the reductionist definition of evolution. Given the reductionist definition of evolution which we all know and love, only creationism explains diversity or speciation. It's the pits, isn't it? >The theory of >evolution of new species is not supported by direct observation, >and assumes facts not in evidence. AS> It is certainly supported by observation, of (e.g.) the AS> fossil record, the structure of existing life, DNA AS> analysis, and many other things. Consider (e.g.) the AS> behavior of fast-breeding organisms (insects, microbes) AS> under intense selective pressure (insecticides, AS> antibiotics). The TOE predicts that natural selection will AS> cause those individuals with more resistance to be more AS> successful at reproduction, so the population will AS> gradually become more resistant. Please pay attention. We were talking about direct observation of the evolution of new species, not about evolution of the properties of existing species. AS> Your theory, on the other hand, predicts that this will AS> *not* happen, or at least *has not* happened; because life AS> was created "as it is now". As admitted, the properties of these organisms may change, but not the organisms themselves. >The theory of creation is independent of the phenomenon of >microevolution which explains such things as the development of >disease or poison resistance via natural selection and >differential reproductive success. AS> "Independent"? Your TOC claims that microevolution has AS> never happened, because "all life was created as it is AS> now". It therefore predicts that all organisms have always AS> had the same level of disease or poison resistance as they AS> currently have. Any (e.g.) historical evidence to the AS> contrary is, therefore, evidence against your TOC. Please distinguish between creation of new species and changes of the properties of existing species. >But evolution via natural >selection acts only at the level of a population while Creation >works at the inter-population level. AS> ??? "evolution via natural selection" operates at the level AS> of the *individual*, or (according to some) at the level of AS> the *gene*. There are no reputable evolutionary biologists who think that natural selection targets the individual gene. You are correct that natural selection targets the individual organism, but the resulting evolution is a population level phenomenon. Please distinguish carefully evolution and natural selection. They ain't the same animal. Maybe I need to write a faq on this. AS> (Almost) no scientist claims that it happens at any higher AS> level, except insofar as cumulative individual selection AS> produces changes in the population. That is, *all* changes AS> in populations are explicable as the result of cumulative AS> selection at the individual level or lower. Agreed. This is within the mainstream of evolutionary thought. AS> Your TOC, on the other hand, predicts *nothing* about AS> selection (at the "inter-population" level or otherwise), AS> except that it hasn't happened (because all life was AS> created "as it is now"). That's because evolution (allele change in a population) is independent of creation events (speciations). >Natural selection does not >predict or explain the diversity of life on the planet while >Creation does. AS> Sez who? Read _The Blind Watchmaker_. Evolution does a good AS> job of predicting and explaining the "diversity of life". Haven't read it. How could it possibly explain speciation using the reductionist definition of allele change. Absurd! .... >While the exact mechanisms of Creation are unknown, the fossil >record is replete with examples of creation. AS> Sez who? Please give an example. The appearance of life at the beginning of the precambrian about 4,000,000 years ago would be such an example. But every new species that appears in the fossil record is also an example. There's lots and lots of creations. >New species appear, >and life itself appears suddenly in the fossil record. AS> Life (as it is now) occurs anything but suddenly. For a long time, AS> there was just prokaryotic life; then all sorts of weird life (most of AS> it nothing like "life as it is now") appears; then most of it dies AS> out. Life "as it is now" appears gradually over hundreds of millions AS> of years. And each step where new species occur is another example of creation. AS> And species seem to develop from other, existing species. AS> Predicted by the TOE, but not by your TOC. It's not predicted by the TOE, but the main premise of it. >Further research is needed to determine the mechanisms for these >well documented examples of creation, AS> "well documented examples of creation"? Cite the documents, AS> please. See above. >but current theory holds >that these creation events imply the existence of a creator. AS> Whose current theory? Even your "TOC" doesn't say there was AS> a creator, just that creation occured. And the prevalent AS> "current theory" of biology doesn't invoke a creator. The theory of creation is not intended to be accepted. It's intended to win $10 from Dr Pepper. If it can be shown that creations occur, there is a logical implication that these creations were caused by something. The other possibility is that these creations were caused by nothing. I think the existence of a creator is the more parsimonious explanation. >Note >that the existence of this creator is a conclusion of the theory >of scientific creationism and not a basic assumption or premise >of it. AS> Mm, yes. AS> How about TOC #2: AS> "All life was created, as it is now, by invisible pink AS> unicorns (IPUs)." AS> This theory does not state that IPUs exist. It merely AS> states that if life exists, it was created as it is now by AS> IPUs. AS> We observe that life does exist. Furthermore, it exists "as AS> it is now". AS> Therefore, the theory conclude that IPUs exist; for how AS> could life have been created by IPUs if they did not exist? AS> Note that the existence of these IPUs is a conclusion of AS> the theory of scientific pink-unicornism and not a basic AS> assumption or premise of Sounds good, but there is no need to postulate IPUs, thus your version assumes facts not in evidence. My version makes the fewest possible assumptions given the premise of creation..... AS> If life were composed of a single, universally interfertile AS> species, your TOC would, with equanimity, predict that life AS> had always been *that* way. But it isn't, so.... >The >Theory of Evolution, by itself, makes no such prediction and >there is no a priori reason why life is organized into species. AS> It may not predict that life is organized into species. But AS> it does *explain* why life is divided into species. Haw! HOW does it *explain* speciation? This better be good. AS> Further, it explains why these species can be grouped into AS> genuses, families, orders, etc. Ooooh, are you out on a limb! Please define genus, family, order, etc, so that I can unambiguously determine if a given assemblage containing unique derived characters is one or the other or none. Looking forward to your reply. AS> Your TOC does *not* explain this. If all species were AS> created separately, there is no reason why any two species AS> should be more like each other than like others. I'll wait for your elucidation of the definitions of genera, families, etc before tackling this one. Hint: Higher categories are strictly manmade hierarchical classifications with no direct mapping to the real biological world. >Furthermore the Theory of Creation predicts that there will be >evidence of creation events. AS> It doesn't really predict that, but I'll give it to you AS> anyway. So. Where is the "evidence of creation events"? I AS> don't see any. >Such evidence is abundant in the >fossil record with new species and life itself appearing at >various strata. AS> Again, Sez who? Your interpretation of the fossil record is AS> not a common one among paleontologists... That's 'cause they're all blinded by the religion of evilutionism. >In >fact, a logical extension of the Theory of Evolution predicts >that no evidence of abiogenesis will be found. Thus it is >Evolution which is falsified by the data, not Creation. AS> HOW does the TOE predict this? The TOE does not concern AS> itself with abiogenesis (pace deaddog). It concerns itself AS> *only* with the behavior of imperfect replicators. It does, AS> indeed, explain how "living" imperfect replicators can AS> arise from "non-living" ones; but it isn't concerned with AS> how those first imperfect replicators came to exist. The TOE states that all life evolved from pre-existing life. Since life now exists, that means there must have been pre-existing life. This statement is true in all time frames. Thus life always existed. QED. >The Theory of Creation is falsifiable. AS> Yes, and falsified. If there were evidence that life has AS> not always been as it is now, if new species were found to AS> arise or existing ones were found to change (e.g. develop AS> new immunities), that would be evidence *against* your TOC. AS> And there is plenty of such evidence. The TOC does not claim that life has always been as it is now. Many species have been created and gone extinct over many generations. The fossil record shows that. The TOC proposes that all species living today were created as they are now. That's all. >If it were found that >life were not organized into discrete, discontinuous, >reproductively isolated populations, that would disprove >Creation. AS> Au contraire. If it were found that "life was not organized AS> into discrete, discontinuous, reproductively isolated AS> populations", your TOC would calmly predict that life has AS> *never* been organized into discrete, discontinuous, AS> reproductively isolated populations. No problem. Good point. I'll give you that one. >The hypothesized mechanism of the Theory of Creation, is that the >observed creation events imply a creator. AS> Stipulated. Observed creation events do, indeed, imply a AS> creator. Now give an example of an observed creation AS> event. I already gave you one, the beginning of life itself. Any claim of an observed speciation can be interpreted as a creation because evolution only affects alleles in *a* population. ... "Could you continue your petty bickering? I find it most intriguing." --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #109 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [108 <컴] [컴> 110] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 22:03 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36735 of talk.origins: From: Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe Morlan) Date: 30 Jun 94 22:20:39 -0800 Newsgroups: talk.origins Subject: Re: An objection to Mayr's definition. Organization: Damar Enterprises Lines: 23 -=> Quoting Daniel A Ashlock to All <=- DAA> The reductionist definition is far more tractable when one DAA> is trying to do a quantatative analysis of evolution and, DAA> here's where I am puzzled, it seems that the changes in DAA> diversity and degree of adaptation could be taken to be DAA> consequences of the reductionist definition when it is DAA> living in the real world. The reductionist definition implies that genes are targets of selection when actually it is the entire organism. Furthermore natural selection of variation invariably reduces diversity by culling the less fit members of the populations. It seems to me that the logical consequence of evolution via natural selection is a relatively depauperate world of few species and little diversity. I agree with Mayr that the reductionist definition of evolution is wrong and misleading as well as leaving unexplained much if not most evolutionary phenomena. ... "Could you continue your petty bickering? I find it most intriguing." --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #110 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [109 <컴] [컴> 111] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 22:03 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36750 of talk.origins: From: scharle@lukasiewicz.cc.nd.edu (scharle) Subject: Re: A Theory of Creation! (was Re: Is this a theory) Date: 1 Jul 1994 14:53:05 GMT Organization: University of Notre Dame Lines: 53 In article , Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe Morlan) writes: |> -=> Quoting Andrew Solovay to All <=- |> |> AS> Well, if it's a "theory", I don't think it's a theory |> AS> that'll keep evilutionists up at night. |> |> But does it qualify as a theory? If it does, then Dr Pepper owes |> me $10. If not, then I need to fix it. Hmmm. Interesting bet. Is it possible for Dr. Pepper to win? |> |> >The theory of scientific creation states that all life was |> >created as it is now. |> |> AS> "All life... as it is now"? Therefore, (e.g.) gonococcus |> AS> was created with as much resistance to penicilin as it has |> AS> now. |> |> Yup. More or less. |> |> >The primary scientific evidence for creation is that all species |> >breed true. |> |> AS> How is that evidence for your "theory"? Your theory says |> AS> nothing about speciation. Rather, it says that all life was |> AS> created as it is now. |> |> Actually creationism = speciation. They're synonyms. [...much deleted...] It would have saved some time if you had mentioned that earlier. While I still have difficulty in following some of your inferences, I'll not press that, as the only question seems to be whether you have something which can be called a theory of creationism, not whether it is a good theory. Let me ask you what is wrong with these candidates for a theory of creation that is not wrong with yours: Candidate A: Creation is the time derivative of momentum. Now, rewrite Newtonian mechanics with the word "force" replaced by "creation" throughout. Candidate B: Creationism is the theory that all dogs have seven legs. (This theory is easily falsified, hence is a falsifiable theory of creationism.) -- Tom Scharle |scharle@irishmvs Room G003 Computing Center |scharle@lukasiewicz.cc.nd.edu University of Notre Dame Notre Dame, IN 46556-0539 USA --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #111 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [110 <컴] [컴> 112] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 22:04 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36753 of talk.origins: From: danwell@iastate.edu (Daniel A Ashlock) Subject: Re: An objection to Mayr's definition. Date: 1 Jul 1994 15:07:12 GMT Organization: Denver Deathbeams and Stuff Lines: 58 In article , Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe Morlan) writes: > -=> Quoting Daniel A Ashlock to All <=- > > >DAA> The reductionist definition is far more tractable when one >DAA> is trying to do a quantatative analysis of evolution and, >DAA> here's where I am puzzled, it seems that the changes in >DAA> diversity and degree of adaptation could be taken to be >DAA> consequences of the reductionist definition when it is >DAA> living in the real world. > >The reductionist definition implies that genes are targets of >selection when actually it is the entire organism. No, it doesn't. It makes no statement _at_ _all_ about what the target of evolution is. In fact I was unaware that evolution had a target? >Furthermore >natural selection of variation invariably reduces diversity by >culling the less fit members of the populations. And if you remove the water tank from a steam engine it works poorly too; what's the relevance? I'm not being facetious. When one says "Evolution is the variation of allel frequencies in a population over time" one has said not one word about the source of the variation. >It seems to me >that the logical consequence of evolution via natural selection >is a relatively depauperate world of few species and little >diversity. And the consequence of a steam engine with the water tank removed is a lot of hot metal that doesn't produce much useful work. While you are correct, the existence of natural sources of additional diversity make me wonder why you care? >I agree with Mayr that the reductionist definition of evolution >is wrong and misleading as well as leaving unexplained much if >not most evolutionary phenomena. Huh? The definition is clear, unambiguous, can be used to derive both examples of natural and artificial evolution by adding appropriate additional strucure, and matches all the examples of evolution I'm aware of. Mayr's definition _excludes_ some forms of evolution. It seems to me that you're trying to cram an introduction to evolution into the definition to the detriment of it's accuracy. >... "Could you continue your petty bickering? I find it most intriguing." -Data. One of my heros. -- Dan Ashlock (Danwell) danwell@iastate.edu --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #112 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [111 <컴] [컴> 113] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 22:06 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36755 of talk.origins: From: lamoran@gpu.utcc.utoronto.ca (L.A. Moran) Subject: Re: An objection to Mayr's definition. Organization: UTCC Public Access Date: Fri, 1 Jul 1994 15:18:22 GMT Lines: 44 In article , Joe Morlan wrote: > -=> Quoting Daniel A Ashlock to All <=- > > >DAA> The reductionist definition is far more tractable when one >DAA> is trying to do a quantatative analysis of evolution and, >DAA> here's where I am puzzled, it seems that the changes in >DAA> diversity and degree of adaptation could be taken to be >DAA> consequences of the reductionist definition when it is >DAA> living in the real world. > >The reductionist definition implies that genes are targets of >selection when actually it is the entire organism. Furthermore >natural selection of variation invariably reduces diversity by >culling the less fit members of the populations. It seems to me >that the logical consequence of evolution via natural selection >is a relatively depauperate world of few species and little >diversity. > The "reductionist definition" doesn't say anything about the mechanism of evolution. The definition of evolution is independent of any theory about how it works. You are correct in assuming that strong natural selection will eliminate alleles that have low fitness. The fact that living populations are diverse is one of the proofs that natural selection isn't as important in evolution as most people believe. >I agree with Mayr that the reductionist definition of evolution >is wrong and misleading as well as leaving unexplained much if >not most evolutionary phenomena. > Please explain why the "reductionist definition" is wrong and offer one that is correct. Please explain why a DEFINITION should include any theory or speculation about mechanisms. Remember, we are defining _evolution_ here not the _theory of evolution_ or _speciation_. Laurence A. Moran (Larry) --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #113 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [112 <컴] [컴> 114] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 22:06 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. Article 36758 of talk.origins: From: woodward@luna.ec.usf.edu. (Chris Woodward (PSY)) Subject: Re: Is this a theory Date: 1 Jul 1994 15:22:34 GMT Organization: Univ. of South Florida, College of Arts & Sciences Lines: 139 In article <168_9406301000@damar.com> Joe.Morlan@FISHTANK.damar.com (Joe Morlan) writes: > -=> Quoting I.B. Harris to All <=- > >IH> But why all this arguing about semantics? As I understand >IH> it, the scientific definition of a theory is a system of >IH> beliefs which all the available evidence supports. A law, >IH> despite the feeling of absoluteness its popular usage >IH> suggests, is simply either an initial assumption, or a >IH> consequence of the overlying theory. > >I'd be curious if anybody thinks this qualifies as a "theory." > >---------------------------------------------------------- >THE LONG AWAITED THEORY OF CREATIONISM > >The theory of scientific creation states that all life was >created as it is now. Which is immediately falsified by the catalog of hominid fossils (Homo neanderthalensis in particular) that have no modern analogue. >The primary scientific evidence for creation is that all species >breed true. No species gives birth to new species. Lizards beget >lizards and amoebas beget amoebas. There is ample scientific >evidence that species reproduce themselves. Note that this makes >no unsupported assumptions, nor does it invoke any supernatural >entities. Actually, species do not always breed true. Horses and donkeys can breed to produce (sterile) offspring known as "mules". Further problems are found with the definition of "species". If you define a species as a class of animals that breeds true, then the "primary scientific evidence for creation" becomes a lame bit of polemical circle-jerking. >The Theory of Creation is thus more parsimonious than the >theory of evolution, which states that species evolve into new >species, either suddenly or by gradual steps. The theory of >evolution of new species is not supported by direct observation, >and assumes facts not in evidence. "assumes facts not in evidence"? Sounds like a lawyer's phrase cribbed from "Matlock" or "Law & Order", and it's misapplied to boot. To top it all off, the evolution of new species *has* been observed (read the speciation FAQ), so this is directly contradicted by evidence. >The theory of creation is independent of the phenomenon of >microevolution which explains such things as the development of >disease or poison resistance via natural selection and >differential reproductive success. But evolution via natural >selection acts only at the level of a population while Creation >works at the inter-population level. Natural selection does not >predict or explain the diversity of life on the planet while >Creation does. Oh? How does Creation explain the existence of "living fossils" like the Coelacanth (sp?), whose fossil bones are in museums but living examples of which are sometimes caught off Madagascar? How does Creation explain the rapid development of the enormous number of different species we have today from the relative hand- ful that could have fit on Noah's Ark? I'm not even a professional biologist/geneticist (I'm an exper- imental psychologist), but I recognize argumentum ad handwavium when I see it. >While the exact mechanisms of Creation are unknown, the fossil >record is replete with examples of creation. New species appear, >and life itself appears suddenly in the fossil record. Which sort of contradicts the earlier assertion that all life was created as it is now, doesn't it? >Further research is needed to determine the mechanisms for these >well documented examples of creation, but current theory holds >that these creation events imply the existence of a creator. Note >that the existence of this creator is a conclusion of the theory >of scientific creationism and not a basic assumption or premise >of it. Oh? How can you talk about creation without postulating a creator? Isn't that .. well, dishonest? >The theory of creation as stated makes a number of testable >predictions. E.g. it predicts that life will be organized into >discontinuous, reproductively isolated population (species). The >Theory of Evolution, by itself, makes no such prediction and >there is no a priori reason why life is organized into species. Not as it's "explained" here, it doesn't. Nothing about a creation necessarily *implies* that the created species will be reproductively isolated. If the Creator wanted to, he/she/it could have created the species with any degree of reproductive isolation from none to complete -- it's an assertion that does not follow from the only semi-clear assertion in the whole mess. >Furthermore the Theory of Creation predicts that there will be >evidence of creation events. Such evidence is abundant in the >fossil record with new species and life itself appearing at >various strata. The Theory of Evolution makes no such >predictions and fails to predict evidence of abiogenesis. In >fact, a logical extension of the Theory of Evolution predicts >that no evidence of abiogenesis will be found. Thus it is >Evolution which is falsified by the data, not Creation. Eh? How, may I ask, can you tell the evidence from a creation event from the evidence of evolutionary change? Do you slice time finely enough so that even if we had a complete fossil record of every individual from Lucy down to the present you'd still be able to (illegitimately) say that each was a creation event? >The Theory of Creation is falsifiable. If it were found that >life were not organized into discrete, discontinuous, >reproductively isolated populations, that would disprove >Creation. If evidence were found that life always existed, that >would falsify the Theory of Creation. It's only your particular literalistic formulation of a Theory of Creation that would be falsified -- other theories, like the "Blind Watchmaker" theory would fare somewhat better. >The hypothesized mechanism of the Theory of Creation, is that the >observed creation events imply a creator. While the exact >mechanism of these creations or the methods used by the creator >are not yet known, they are subject to further research. Current >experiments on abiogenesis and attempts to create new species >in the laboratory are the focus of current research (or should >be.) You seem to be confused about the purpose of abiogenetic research. Those experiments are directed towards demonstrating the plausibility of life emerging from an inorganic soup with appropriate energy in- put and catalysis -- in other words, just because the conditions are right for it, not because someone waved a wand and said "let there be life." --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385) Message #114 [Evolutionary Theory Discussion] [113 <컴] From: Wesley R. Elsberry Posted: 1 Jul 94 22:35 To : All Subj: Joe and t.o. It looks like a lot of the same concerns that I've expressed over Joe's "ToC" were noted by the t.o. dogpile, like the lack of a mechanism, the failure to address "creation" by a supposed theory of same, and a laxity in logical statements given within the "ToC" (Scharle's commentary went more directly to the point than my own take on the matter). --- msgedsq 2.0.5 * Origin: Central Neural System 409-589-3338 (1:117/385)

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