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Here’s Douglas Ell on the concept of guided evolution

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doug-ell Attorney (and former atheist) Douglas Ell thinks Darwin’s followers shouldn’t get away with describing their proposed mechanism as “evolution” generally:

I have found confusion over the word “evolution.” Some, particularly academics, will tell you that the word refers to Darwinian evolution – the theory that all species arose solely from random mutations and natural selection. That’s certainly one of the definitions in many dictionaries. But to many people, including I think most children, “evolution” just means any process of formation or change. In that sense, “evolution” is what we used to call at MIT a “no-brainer.” Clearly there have been different species at different times. There are no dinosaurs walking around my neighborhood.

So what’s the best way to frame the debate, to open minds to the substantial new evidence that Darwin’s theory is wrong? If you equate “evolution” with Darwin’s theory, and argue “evolution is wrong,” I think you are giving Darwinists an unnecessary advantage. To those people who have a basic, nonacademic, concept of evolution as a process of change, you appear to be arguing that species don’t change. You could come across as a flat-Earth person.

I would frame the debate as “guided” evolution versus “unguided” evolution.

It’s true. In the age of horizontal gene transfer, epigenetics, convergent evolution, Darwinism’s many failures, they are still permitted to act as though they own the concept.

But is “guided evolution” the right term? Readers?

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Honestly, when I read terms like "guided evolution" I cannot help but think on "theistic evolution", even though I know that's not what it means! Sadly, I feel that people will always associate the word "evolution" with Darwin. Argue for "guided evolution" and all people will think is: "oh see! He's saying evolution is true!!". It creates confusion. Another term needs to be introduced. Candylolz
Correction to "Lack of imprecision allows endless amendment … " = "Lack of precision allows endless amendment ... " redwave
'Evolution' is not sufficiently precise for scientific inquiry. The imprecision of the concept, along with the contextually disconnected uses, might serve the scientific community for opportunistic purposes yet delivers a broader sense of incredulity. Lack of imprecision allows endless amendment ... it is as though the concept of evolution is adaptability, mutability, randomized selectibility whether the concept is a signifier of natural processes or something altogether different. The efficient way to make a term or concept precise is to append modifiers, such as guided or unguided. The difficulties in choosing modifiers are also precision difficulties, should a scientific researcher desire to explain the results of experiments in well defined terms. In balancing the economy of words against the communicability of concepts, scientific researchers settle into an assumed commonality of terminology, such as the assumptions of context and consensual usage. Have the communication assumptions salvaged 'evolution' from imprecision? 'Evolution' reminds me, informally, of a worker's cluttered desk. Is the desk cluttered, disorganized, because the work is in process of completion? Is the desk cluttered because the worker is disorganized? Is the desk cluttered because the worker doesn’t discern any real advantage to order, to a well defined methodology for completing the tasks? Is the clutter a state of mind? Another approach for understanding the precision of language is an analogy between linguistic constructs ... concepts and vehicles. Here, vehicle is a moving container that carries something or other things from a nonarbitrary point to another point, nonarbitrarily chosen. The vehicle proposed is a linguistic container which carries semantic and syntactic weight. 'Evolution' is an overloaded vehicle and its usage is arbitrary. It will not easily reach a destination for its unloading. And the logistics crew is preoccupied with issues of priority ... who is going to unload the stuff? Since no one agrees to perform the necessary work of unloading, the vehicle remains at an arbitrary point ... stuffed full. A concept could be the birthing of an idea, a thought, which, at its initial moments, is not a stuffed full vehicle and does not have arbitrarily chosen points. 'Evolution' might have been such a concept, with a manageable load and a nonarbitrary destination point. This is not the case at the present moment. And we might have mistakenly assumed 'evolution' could carry the load, so we packed it full. And we did not pack the evolution vehicle well defined and logistically manageable. Possibly some of us want to abandon the vehicle on the road ... leave it for the scavengers or let nature take its course. Some of us might want to tow the vehicle to a junkyard and empty it out ... to see all the stuff. redwave
If it is "guided" then it is designed and a designer. Evolution taken outside of Darwinian views is clever, and the =redefinition of evolution as inferred seems to be a constant observation...anything that infers a guided process cannot be evolution. I think the no dinos walking the earth any more? HUMMMM we have tons hundreds of thousands of "living Fossils" and they still live today and they have not changed. I think its safe to implore that the animals of the African PLains are still be procreated today unless and if they have not went extinct. There are a lot of absurd points made, I have never seen an ancient fossilized animal that has hundreds or even thousands of fossils of the same species in Museums across the world they have a specific taxonomic definition and nomenclature. Those that are still living and those that are extinct are always the same species with no change. There may be 250 or more therapods but each one its dug up is exactly as it is. Inferring that they are the off shoot of an ancestor when the s lines can not be ascertained is again story telling. I take offense to the mans statement above, because I am indeed a flat -earth Fixity person and the argument is not stories but facts and evidences through out the history of the animal kingdom fossilized or living fossils. No animal species has any "self-determination" or control of tis procreative genes, anymore than you do. The only body plan changes I am aware of is through the process of hybridization where "new" information is introduced and therefore a new body plan or a changed one. within the pale of the species there is variation and mutation. We all accept and believe that and can point out example after example. but what does not happen with these is a whole new species or body plan change? Simple Hybridization is not evolution... lastly what guided evolutionary mechansim would be responsible for the information contained in DNA. It was not produced by nature it existed prior to any biologic units development. Design is right in front of our eyes and many of us are fools for a 150 year old theory that has been beat to death and falls short.... Reptoman
I think a better term might be rational evolution as opposed to irrational evolution. Or objective evolution as opposed to subjective evolution. Or scientific evolution as opposed to mythical evolution. Mung

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