Culture Darwinism Intelligent Design Origin Of Life

An article at MSN news suggests that Darwin might have been wrong (!)

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It’s just a conventional story in favor of hydrothermal vents for the
origin of life, as opposed to Darwin’s “warm little pond”:

Dr Sean Jordan said, “In our experiments, we have created one of the essential components of life under conditions that are more reflective of ancient environments than many other laboratory studies,”.

“We still don’t know where life first formed, but our study shows that you cannot rule out the possibility of deep-sea hydrothermal vents.”

The researchers also point out that deep-sea hydrothermal vents are not unique to Earth.

Rob Waugh, “Charles Darwin ‘may have been wrong about where life came from’” at MSN

So we should look for them on exoplanets if we are looking for life.

Some of us can remember back to when most such stories would begin by announcing that they had proven Darwin right. Funny how the rhetoric is changing.

And David Gelernter still has his job at Yale despite dumping Darwin.

Hat tip: Ken Francis, co-author with Theodore Dalrymple of The Terror of Existence: From Ecclesiastes to Theatre of the Absurd

See also: Origin of life: Could it all have come together in one very special place?

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62 Replies to “An article at MSN news suggests that Darwin might have been wrong (!)

  1. 1
    Seversky says:

    My impression is that the hydrothermal vents hypothesis has been around for a while. Besides this is about abiogenesis not evolution.

  2. 2
    bornagain77 says:

    as to this comment from the research article:

    “Vesicles formed from single-chain amphiphiles (SCAs) such as fatty acids probably played an important role in the origin of life.,,,
    Here, we show that mixtures of these C10–C15 SCAs form vesicles in aqueous solutions between pH approx. 6.5 and >12 at modern seawater concentrations of NaCl, Mg2+ and Ca2+. Adding C10 isoprenoids improves vesicle stability even further.”
    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41559-019-1015-y

    So what? “We’ve known for 60 years that life’s most basic building blocks can form spontaneously, given the right conditions. But how did they assemble into complex organisms? Hard evidence to help us answer that question is lacking.”

    “We’ve known for 60 years that life’s most basic building blocks can form spontaneously, given the right conditions. But how did they assemble into complex organisms? Hard evidence to help us answer that question is lacking.”
    Robert Shapiro
    https://www.newscientist.com/article/mg22329821-500-space-is-the-place-to-solve-the-riddle-of-life-maybe/

    The question is not if simple molecules can form spontaneously, rather the question is how did life’s most basic building blocks assemble into a supposedly ‘simple’ cell?

    As Dr. James Tour put the situation,

    “So the gedanken (thought) experiment is this. Even if I gave you all the components. Even if I gave you all the amino acids. All the protein structures from those amino acids that you wanted. All the lipids in the purity that you wanted. The DNA. The RNA. Even in the sequence you wanted. I’ve even given you the code. And all the nucleic acids. So now I say, “Can you now assemble a cell, not in a prebiotic cesspool but in your nice laboratory?”. And the answer is a resounding NO! And if anybody claims otherwise they do not know this area (of research).”
    – James Tour: The Origin of Life Has Not Been Explained – 4:20 minute mark (The more we know, the worse the problem gets for materialists)
    https://youtu.be/r4sP1E1Jd_Y?t=255

    And, “So let’s help the Dream Team out by providing the polymerized forms: polypeptides, all the enzymes they desire, the polysaccharides, DNA and RNA in any sequence they desire, cleanly assembled. The level of sophistication in even the simplest of possible living cells is so chemically complex that we are even more clueless now than with anything discussed regarding prebiotic chemistry or macroevolution. The Dream Team will not know where to start.”

    Origin of Life: An Inside Story – Professor James Tour – May 1, 2016
    Excerpt: “All right, now let’s assemble the Dream Team. We’ve got good professors here, so let’s assemble the Dream Team. Let’s further assume that the world’s top 100 synthetic chemists, top 100 biochemists and top 100 evolutionary biologists combined forces into a limitlessly funded Dream Team. The Dream Team has all the carbohydrates, lipids, amino acids and nucleic acids stored in freezers in their laboratories… All of them are in 100% enantiomer purity. [Let’s] even give the team all the reagents they wish, the most advanced laboratories, and the analytical facilities, and complete scientific literature, and synthetic and natural non-living coupling agents. Mobilize the Dream Team to assemble the building blocks into a living system – nothing complex, just a single cell. The members scratch their heads and walk away, frustrated…
    So let’s help the Dream Team out by providing the polymerized forms: polypeptides, all the enzymes they desire, the polysaccharides, DNA and RNA in any sequence they desire, cleanly assembled. The level of sophistication in even the simplest of possible living cells is so chemically complex that we are even more clueless now than with anything discussed regarding prebiotic chemistry or macroevolution. The Dream Team will not know where to start. Moving all this off Earth does not solve the problem, because our physical laws are universal.
    You see the problem for the chemists? Welcome to my world. This is what I’m confronted with, every day.“
    James Tour – regarded as one of the top ten leading synthetic Chemists in the world
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....nt-design/

    So, once again, the question is not if simple molecules can form spontaneously, rather the question is how did life’s most basic building blocks assemble into a supposedly ‘simple’ cell?

    Dr. Michael Denton gives us a glimpse at just how monumental that task actually is of constructing a ‘simple’ cell from basic building blocks,

    “To grasp the reality of life as it has been revealed by molecular biology, we must magnify a cell a thousand million times until it is twenty kilometres in diameter and resembles a giant airship large enough to cover a great city like London or New York. What we would then see would be an object of unparalleled complexity and adaptive design. On the surface of the cell we would see millions of openings, like the portholes of a vast space ship, opening and closing to allow a continual stream of materials to flow in and out. If we were to enter one of these openings with find ourselves in a world of supreme technology and bewildering complexity. We would see endless highly organized corridors and conduits branching in every direction away from the perimeter of the cell, some leading to the central memory bank in the nucleus and others to assembly plants and processing units. The nucleus of itself would be a vast spherical chamber more than a kilometer in diameter, resembling a geodesic dome inside of which we would see, all neatly stacked together in ordered arrays, the miles of coiled chains of the DNA molecules. A huge range of products and raw materials would shuttle along all the manifold conduits in a highly ordered fashion to and from all the various assembly plants in the outer regions of the cell. We would wonder at the level of control implicit in the movement of so many objects down so many seemingly endless conduits, all in perfect unison. We would see all around us, in every direction we looked, all sorts of robot-like machines. We would notice that the simplest of the functional components of the cell, the protein molecules, were astonishingly, complex pieces of molecular machinery, each one consisting of about three thousand atoms arranged in highly organized 3-D spatial conformation. We would wonder even more as we watched the strangely purposeful activities of these weird molecular machines, particularly when we realized that, despite all our accumulated knowledge of physics and chemistry, the task of designing one such molecular machine – that is one single functional protein molecule – would be completely beyond our capacity at present and will probably not be achieved until at least the beginning of the next century. Yet the life of the cell depends on the integrated activities of thousands, certainly tens, and probably hundreds of thousands of different protein molecules.
    We would see that nearly every feature of our own advanced machines had its analogue in the cell: artificial languages and their decoding systems, memory banks for information storage and retrieval, elegant control systems regulating the automated assembly of parts and components, error fail-safe and proof-reading devices utilized for quality control, assembly processes involving the principle of prefabrication and modular construction. In fact, so deep would be the feeling of deja-vu, so persuasive the analogy, that much of the terminology we would use to describe this fascinating molecular reality would be borrowed from the world of late twentieth-century technology.
    What we would be witnessing would be an object resembling an immense automated factory, a factory larger than a city and carrying out almost as many unique functions as all the manufacturing activities of man on earth. However, it would be a factory which would have one capacity not equaled in any of our own most advanced machines, for it would be capable of replicating its entire structure within a matter of a few hours. To witness such an act at a magnification of one thousand million times would be an awe-inspiring spectacle.”
    Michael Denton PhD., Evolution: A Theory In Crisis, pg.328

  3. 3
    bornagain77 says:

    As should be obvious, having the correct sequential information in DNA is not nearly enough to explain the construction of the ‘simple’ cell. Besides the sequential information in DNA there is also a vast amount of ‘positional information’ in the cell that must be accounted for as well. That is to say, there is a vast amount of information that is telling the molecules exactly where to be that must be accounted for as well.

    The positional information that is found to be in a simple one cell bacterium, when working from the thermodynamic perspective, is found to be on the order 10 to the 12 bits,,, which is several orders of magnitude more information than the amount of sequential information that is encoded on the DNA of a ‘simple’ bacterium.

    Biophysics – Information theory. Relation between information and entropy: – Setlow-Pollard, Ed. Addison Wesley
    Excerpt: Linschitz gave the figure 9.3 x 10^12 cal/deg or 9.3 x 10^12 x 4.2 joules/deg for the entropy of a bacterial cell. Using the relation H = S/(k In 2), we find that the information content is 4 x 10^12 bits. Morowitz’ deduction from the work of Bayne-Jones and Rhees gives the lower value of 5.6 x 10^11 bits, which is still in the neighborhood of 10^12 bits. Thus two quite different approaches give rather concordant figures.
    http://www.astroscu.unam.mx/~a.....ecular.htm

    ,,, Which is the equivalent of 100 million pages of Encyclopedia Britannica. ‘In comparison,,, the largest libraries in the world,, have about 10 million volumes or 10^12 bits.”

    “a one-celled bacterium, e. coli, is estimated to contain the equivalent of 100 million pages of Encyclopedia Britannica. Expressed in information in science jargon, this would be the same as 10^12 bits of information. In comparison, the total writings from classical Greek Civilization is only 10^9 bits, and the largest libraries in the world – The British Museum, Oxford Bodleian Library, New York Public Library, Harvard Widenier Library, and the Moscow Lenin Library – have about 10 million volumes or 10^12 bits.”
    – R. C. Wysong – The Creation-evolution Controversy

    ‘The information content of a simple cell has been estimated as around 10^12 bits, comparable to about a hundred million pages of the Encyclopedia Britannica.”
    Carl Sagan, “Life” in Encyclopedia Britannica: Macropaedia (1974 ed.), pp. 893-894

    And in finding out exactly where this vast amount of positional information, (that must somehow be accounted for in order to give an adequate account for the Origin of Life), came from, in the following 2010 experimental realization of Maxwell’s demon thought experiment, it was demonstrated that knowledge of a particle’s location and/or position converts information into energy.

    Maxwell’s demon demonstration turns information into energy – November 2010
    Excerpt: Scientists in Japan are the first to have succeeded in converting information into free energy in an experiment that verifies the “Maxwell demon” thought experiment devised in 1867.,,, In Maxwell’s thought experiment the demon creates a temperature difference simply from information about the gas molecule temperatures and without transferring any energy directly to them.,,, Until now, demonstrating the conversion of information to energy has been elusive, but University of Tokyo physicist Masaki Sano and colleagues have succeeded in demonstrating it in a nano-scale experiment. In a paper published in Nature Physics they describe how they coaxed a Brownian particle to travel upwards on a “spiral-staircase-like” potential energy created by an electric field solely on the basis of information on its location. As the particle traveled up the staircase it gained energy from moving to an area of higher potential, and the team was able to measure precisely how much energy had been converted from information.
    http://www.physorg.com/news/20.....nergy.html

    And as the following 2010 article stated about the preceding experiment, “This is a beautiful experimental demonstration that information has a thermodynamic content,”

    Demonic device converts information to energy – 2010
    Excerpt: “This is a beautiful experimental demonstration that information has a thermodynamic content,” says Christopher Jarzynski, a statistical chemist at the University of Maryland in College Park. In 1997, Jarzynski formulated an equation to define the amount of energy that could theoretically be converted from a unit of information2; the work by Sano and his team has now confirmed this equation. “This tells us something new about how the laws of thermodynamics work on the microscopic scale,” says Jarzynski.
    http://www.scientificamerican......rts-inform

    And as the following 2017 article states: James Clerk Maxwell (said), “The idea of dissipation of energy depends on the extent of our knowledge.”,,,
    quantum information theory,,, describes the spread of information through quantum systems.,,,
    Fifteen years ago, “we thought of entropy as a property of a thermodynamic system,” he said. “Now in (quantum) information theory, we wouldn’t say entropy is a property of a system, but a property of an observer who describes a system.”,,,

    The Quantum Thermodynamics Revolution – May 2017
    Excerpt: the 19th-century physicist James Clerk Maxwell put it, “The idea of dissipation of energy depends on the extent of our knowledge.”
    In recent years, a revolutionary understanding of thermodynamics has emerged that explains this subjectivity using quantum information theory — “a toddler among physical theories,” as del Rio and co-authors put it, that describes the spread of information through quantum systems. Just as thermodynamics initially grew out of trying to improve steam engines, today’s thermodynamicists are mulling over the workings of quantum machines. Shrinking technology — a single-ion engine and three-atom fridge were both experimentally realized for the first time within the past year — is forcing them to extend thermodynamics to the quantum realm, where notions like temperature and work lose their usual meanings, and the classical laws don’t necessarily apply.
    They’ve found new, quantum versions of the laws that scale up to the originals. Rewriting the theory from the bottom up has led experts to recast its basic concepts in terms of its subjective nature, and to unravel the deep and often surprising relationship between energy and information — the abstract 1s and 0s by which physical states are distinguished and knowledge is measured.,,,
    Renato Renner, a professor at ETH Zurich in Switzerland, described this as a radical shift in perspective. Fifteen years ago, “we thought of entropy as a property of a thermodynamic system,” he said. “Now in (quantum) information theory, we wouldn’t say entropy is a property of a system, but a property of an observer who describes a system.”,,,
    https://www.quantamagazine.org/quantum-thermodynamics-revolution/

    Again to repeat that last sentence, “Now in (quantum) information theory, we wouldn’t say entropy is a property of a system, but a property of an observer who describes a system.””

    Think about that statement for a second. That statement should send a chill down the spine of every ID proponent.

    These experiments completely blow the reductive materialistic presuppositions of Darwinian evolution, (presuppositions about information being merely ’emergent’ from some material basis), entirely out of the water and also directly show that information is a property of an ‘observer’ who describes the system and is not a ’emergent’ property of the (material) system itself as Darwinists adamantly presuppose.

    On top of that, ‘classical’ sequential information is found to be a subset of quantum positional information by the following method:
    Specifically, in the following 2011 paper, researchers ,,, show that when the bits (in a computer) to be deleted are quantum-mechanically entangled with the state of an observer, then the observer could even withdraw heat from the system while deleting the bits. Entanglement links the observer’s state to that of the computer in such a way that they know more about the memory than is possible in classical physics.,,, In measuring entropy, one should bear in mind that (in quantum information theory) an object does not have a certain amount of entropy per se, instead an object’s entropy is always dependent on the observer.

    Quantum knowledge cools computers: New understanding of entropy – June 1, 2011
    Excerpt: Recent research by a team of physicists,,, describe,,, how the deletion of data, under certain conditions, can create a cooling effect instead of generating heat. The cooling effect appears when the strange quantum phenomenon of entanglement is invoked.,,,
    The new study revisits Landauer’s principle for cases when the values of the bits to be deleted may be known. When the memory content is known, it should be possible to delete the bits in such a manner that it is theoretically possible to re-create them. It has previously been shown that such reversible deletion would generate no heat. In the new paper, the researchers go a step further. They show that when the bits to be deleted are quantum-mechanically entangled with the state of an observer, then the observer could even withdraw heat from the system while deleting the bits. Entanglement links the observer’s state to that of the computer in such a way that they know more about the memory than is possible in classical physics.,,,
    In measuring entropy, one should bear in mind that an object does not have a certain amount of entropy per se, instead an object’s entropy is always dependent on the observer. Applied to the example of deleting data, this means that if two individuals delete data in a memory and one has more knowledge of this data, she perceives the memory to have lower entropy and can then delete the memory using less energy.,,,
    No heat, even a cooling effect;
    In the case of perfect classical knowledge of a computer memory (zero entropy), deletion of the data requires in theory no energy at all. The researchers prove that “more than complete knowledge” from quantum entanglement with the memory (negative entropy) leads to deletion of the data being accompanied by removal of heat from the computer and its release as usable energy. This is the physical meaning of negative entropy.
    Renner emphasizes, however, “This doesn’t mean that we can develop a perpetual motion machine.” The data can only be deleted once, so there is no possibility to continue to generate energy. The process also destroys the entanglement, and it would take an input of energy to reset the system to its starting state. The equations are consistent with what’s known as the second law of thermodynamics: the idea that the entropy of the universe can never decrease. Vedral says “We’re working on the edge of the second law. If you go any further, you will break it.”
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....134300.htm

    Again, to say that “entropy is always dependent on the observer” is completely antithetical to the entire reductive materialistic presupposition of Darwinian evolution in which it is held that life, as far out of thermodynamic equilibrium as it is, somehow spontaneously emerged completely free from any intelligent observer.

    An ocean of ink has been spilled by Darwinists arguing against Intelligence. Much less will Darwinists ever concede that an Intelligent “Observer” is necessary for the Origin of Life (nor for the subsequent diversification of life). In fact Intelligent “Observers” don’t even come into play in the Darwinian scenario until long after the origin of life. And even then Darwinists have argued, via population genetics, that our observations are illusory and therefore unreliable. (Donald Hoffman)

    Of course, Darwinists could, like Dawkins and Crick have, appeal to Intelligent Extra-Terrestrials in order to try to ‘explain away’ the Origin of Life and avoid the obvious Theistic implications that follow from these recent developments in quantum information theory, but that evidence-free act of desperation on their part, number 1, concedes the necessity of Intelligence in explaining the Origin of Life, and number 2, only pushes the problem back into the imaginative past of untestable speculations.

    So to circumvent that “ET” act of desperation on the part of Darwinists, and to further establish that the Designer of Life must be God, it is necessary to point out that “quantum information” is, number one, found to be ubiquitous within life:

    Darwinian Materialism vs. Quantum Biology – Part II – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oSig2CsjKbg

    And number two, it is also necessary to point out the quantum information and/or quantum entanglement requires a non-local, beyond space and time, cause in order to explain its existence: As the following article stated, “Our result gives weight to the idea that quantum correlations somehow arise from outside spacetime, in the sense that no story in space and time can describe them,”

    Looking beyond space and time to cope with quantum theory – October 28, 2012
    Excerpt: “Our result gives weight to the idea that quantum correlations somehow arise from outside spacetime, in the sense that no story in space and time can describe them,” says Nicolas Gisin, Professor at the University of Geneva, Switzerland, and member of the team.
    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/10/121028142217.htm

    Darwinian materialists simple have no beyond space and time cause to appeal to in order to explain the vast amount of quantum information that is now found to be ubiquitous within life, whereas Christian Theists do have a cause:

    Colossians 1:17
    He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

    Bottom line, these developments in quantum information theory go to the very heart of the ID vs. Evolution debate and directly falsify, number one, Darwinian claims that immaterial information is merely ’emergent’ from some material basis. And number two, these experimental realizations of the Maxwell’s demon thought experiment go even further and also directly validate a primary claim from ID proponents. Specifically, the primary claim that an Intelligent Designer who imparts information directly into a biological system is required in order to circumvent the second law and to therefore give an adequate explanation for the existence of life. And number three, due to quantum non-locality, a beyond space and time cause must be appealed in order to explain the quantum information that is ubiquitous within life. In short, in any coherent explanation for life, and far as the empirical science of Quantum Information theory itself is concerned, God, Who is, by definition, beyond space and time, must ultimately be appealed to in order to give an adequate causal explanation of the origin of life (and the subsequent diversification thereof I might add).

    Of course, since this is empirical science instead of the usual unrestrained imagination of Darwinian ‘just-so story telling’, don’r expect Darwinists to be honest with any of these rather remarkable developments in science any time soon.

    John 1:1-4
    In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind.

  4. 4
    hazel says:

    This is off-topic, but this also pertains to ID, so I thought you guys might be interested:

    flagellum

  5. 5
    Ed George says:

    Hazel, nice article. Maybe it would be better if you just pasted the entire article here in two or three comments. 🙂

    The irreducible complex flagellum is made up of 25 proteins, 23 of which are found elsewhere performing different functions.

  6. 6
    hazel says:

    Glad you liked it. I think if people are interested they should click on the link, though, partially because of the nice pictures.

  7. 7
    ET says:

    Ed George:

    The irreducible complex flagellum is made up of 25 proteins, 23 of which are found elsewhere performing different functions.

    And? Do you realize that it isn’t just getting the right proteins, you need to have the correct quantities of each one. Some have thousands of subunits. Not only that you need to get them all at the right time. Then you need to get them to the right place and finally you need to get them configured properly.

    Not to mention that no one can show that blind and mindless processes can produce the genes required in the first place.

  8. 8
    ET says:

    seversky:

    My impression is that the hydrothermal vents hypothesis has been around for a while. Besides this is about abiogenesis not evolution.

    How life originated dictates how it subsequently evolved. Blind watchmaker evolution only rules if spontaneous generation ruled the OoL. An Intelligently Designed OoL means that life was designed to adapt and evolve.

  9. 9
    ET says:

    Nick Matzke is back with his basic equivocating nonsense- HT Hazel- Evolution or intelligent design?

    Except that Intelligent Design is NOT anti-evolution. It’s sad that Nick refuses to understand what ID is and what is actually being debated. Neither hazel nor Ed have the slightest idea…

  10. 10

    .

    The irreducible complex flagellum is made up of 25 proteins, 23 of which are found elsewhere performing different functions.

    How many of them have to be specified in an irreducibly complex system of symbols and constraints before they ever appear on Earth in the first place? Are there any ID critics willing to address that question in earnest?

  11. 11

    .
    If these proteins were likely to be specified in order to appear in the first place, and further, if they are also expected to be variable and evolve over subsequent generations, wouldn’t that entail that they be specified in a system that a) creates subsequent generations, and b) is capable of not only describing and producing whatever protein that it’s currently making, but also any variation of that protein as well?

    (You know, like how the known extant cell does it).

    Anyone?

  12. 12

    .
    Wouldn’t that system — one capable of those things — also have to be self-referential as well, describing both its constraints and its variable products, like these proteins being discussed here?

    No?

  13. 13
    martin_r says:

    in 2014, Suzan Mazur interviewed Jack Szostak – who is a Nobel laureate and worldwide known for his origin-of-life research.

    Harvard professor and Nobel laureate Jack Szostak said:

    “Life in Lab” In 3 – 5 Years … And more likely within three years.”

    again, Szostak said that in 2014.

    Now is almost 2020 and Szostak has nothing …

    Moreover, Szostak retracted his 2016 NATURE paper on origin-of-life research…

    RetractionWatch.com:

    “Definitely embarrassing:” Nobel Laureate retracts non-reproducible paper in Nature journal”

    “A Nobel Laureate has retracted a 2016 paper in Nature Chemistry that explored the origins of life on earth, after discovering the main conclusions were not correct. ”

    https://retractionwatch.com/2017/12/05/definitely-embarrassing-nobel-laureate-retracts-non-reproducible-paper-nature-journal/

  14. 14
    martin_r says:

    Bornagain@2

    that is a good point, most evolutionists even don’t realize how desperate the situation is (for them),

    even if world’s best scientists have all the cell’s components needed, nobody on Earth is able to assemble a simple cell FROM SCRATCH using these pre-made components, and under controlled conditions, in a lab 🙂 But they hope and BELIEVE that the cell somehow self-assembled, out there, e.g. near hot vents or wherever 🙂

    So, who believes in miracles ? 🙂

    So let me repeat this one:

    Dr. James Tour (TOP 10 chemist in the World):

    “So the gedanken (thought) experiment is this. Even if I gave you all the components. Even if I gave you all the amino acids. All the protein structures from those amino acids that you wanted. All the lipids in the purity that you wanted. The DNA. The RNA. Even in the sequence you wanted. I’ve even given you the code. And all the nucleic acids. So now I say, “Can you now assemble a cell, not in a prebiotic cesspool but in your nice laboratory?”. And the answer is a resounding NO! And if anybody claims otherwise they do not know this area (of research).”
    – James Tour: The Origin of Life Has Not Been Explained – 4:20 minute mark (The more we know, the worse the problem gets for materialists)”
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4sP1E1Jd_Y&feature=youtu.be&t=255

  15. 15
    ET says:

    hazel:

    This is off-topic, but this also pertains to ID, so I thought you guys might be interested:
    flagellum

    Most of us know and understand Nick Matzke’s equivocation and anti-truth agenda, hazel. The article you linked to just proves that he is incapable of learning, incapable of conducting science and incapable of honesty.

  16. 16
    Seversky says:

    Martin_r@ 14

    even if world’s best scientists have all the cell’s components needed, nobody on Earth is able to assemble a simple cell FROM SCRATCH using these pre-made components, and under controlled conditions, in a lab ???? But they hope and BELIEVE that the cell somehow self-assembled, out there, e.g. near hot vents or wherever ????

    Dr James Tour is an eminent synthetic organic chemist. He has no idea how life may have arisen from inanimate chemicals. He says no one else does either. We agree. He’s right. Does that mean that a god did it? No, it means we DON’T KNOW.

    If you accept any of the findings of science then this universe is about 13.85bn years old. The earliest signs of life detected on Earth so far are from around 3.5bn years ago. If abiogenesis occurred then the universe had around 10bn years to find out how to do it. Modern science has been working on the problem for perhaps 150 years at best and you are complaining that we haven’t cracked it yet?

    If we take divine creation as an alternative explanation, do we have any idea how a god might have done it? Do believers even ask that? The answer to both questions is a resounding NO.

    The difference between the two sides? One is trying to find out, the other apparently couldn’t care less.

  17. 17
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky, you might have saved yourself a needless post if you would have read posts 2 and 3 before you made your comment. Not that the truth ever stop you from repeating falsehoods, but anyways,,

  18. 18
    DerekDiMarco says:

    No scientist, with all their time and resources, has been able to create a self-sustaining fusion reaction. But if you have a mindless clump of 10^31 kg of H and He, it happens inevitably. It follows quite obviously that just because a scientist hasn’t reproduced it in the lab, doesn’t mean a mindless process can’t create it.

  19. 19
    ET says:

    Nice question-begging, Derek. What happens when it takes a mind to produce H and He?

  20. 20
    ET says:

    seversky:

    Dr James Tour is an eminent synthetic organic chemist. He has no idea how life may have arisen from inanimate chemicals.

    Life has never arisen from inanimate chemicals.

    If we take divine creation as an alternative explanation, do we have any idea how a god might have done it?

    No, but at least we know it was via Intelligent Design. And that alone tells us quite a bit.

  21. 21

    .
    Ah, the famous Seversky Shuffle. Allow me to translate:

    When Seversky says, “Oh dear, we just don’t know anything yet, we’ve only begun to look”, he is actually saying “I cannot stand what we know. Damn science! I must ignore these things at once and never speak of them”.

    Hey Sev, when John von Neumann successfully described the fundamentals of autonomous open-ended self-replication, didn’t his prediction include a multi-referent (high-capacity) symbol system and a necessary set of interpretive constraints? In fact, wasn’t the processing of symbolic memory the whole point of the organization being described, Sev?

  22. 22

    .
    D,

    This obviously has not occurred to you, but a fusion reaction does not use a reading-frame code to specify itself among alternatives, which is the core organizational condition of living (and evolving) cell.

    Since your subject (the living cell) has nothing in common with your counter-example (fusion reaction), one is then free to replace the topic with whatever one wishes, and happily reach the same conclusion as you have here. In other words, your comment is meaningless.

  23. 23

    .
    Ed, are you unable to address the question posed to you in #10. It is directly related to your comment in #5.

    Ed: The irreducible complex flagellum is made up of 25 proteins, 23 of which are found elsewhere performing different functions.

    UB: How many of them have to be specified in an irreducibly complex system of symbols and constraints before they ever appear on Earth in the first place?

  24. 24

    .
    Ed,

    I then went on to ask a second question. Are you able to submit any of the things you say to logical or evidentiary questions?

    If these proteins were likely to be specified in order to appear in the first place, and further, if they are also expected to be variable and evolve over subsequent generations, wouldn’t that entail that they be specified in a system that a) creates subsequent generations, and b) is capable of not only describing and producing whatever protein that it’s currently making, but also any variation of that protein as well? (…like how the extant cell does it).

  25. 25
    martin_r says:

    Seversky, did i get you right ? (English is not my first language)

    Are you saying, that lets give biologists (natural science graduates) enough time, and one day, these biologists will show us how very sophisticated autonomous self-navigating flying systems can self-design ? 🙂 🙂 🙂

  26. 26
    Marfin says:

    Seversky at 16 – By that twisted logic nothing is impossible , virgin births, raising the dead , walking on water , lead into gold,time machines,flying pigs,something coming from nothing , everything is possible given enough time.
    This makes a mockery of the scientific method as any experimental failures can be brushed aside with, we just need more time, so nothing is falsifiable, and science becomes pointless in this bizaro world of yours.

  27. 27
    Marfin says:

    Seversky -Why do you believe that the origin of life was just a product of nature without any design , we can all see the science does not point to that conclusion so why do you believe it.

  28. 28
    ET says:

    It is very telling that Ed George and hazel always run away from discussions pertaining to science.

  29. 29
    ET says:

    Darwin was wrong about the OoL. Darwin was wrong about the descent of man. And Darwin was wrong about natural selection.

    Darwin was good at barnacles and pigeons.

  30. 30
    Seversky says:

    Upright BiPed@ 21

    Hey Sev, when John von Neumann successfully described the fundamentals of autonomous open-ended self-replication, didn’t his prediction include a multi-referent (high-capacity) symbol system and a necessary set of interpretive constraints? In fact, wasn’t the processing of symbolic memory the whole point of the organization being described, Sev?

    Yes, I’m aware of von Neumann’s work on self-reproducing automata. Tell us, did he specify using a process to store and copy the “blueprint” which would mutate at random away from the original specification such that descendant replicants would bear little or no resemblance to the original?

  31. 31
    Seversky says:

    Martin_r@ 25

    Are you saying, that lets give biologists (natural science graduates) enough time, and one day, these biologists will show us how very sophisticated autonomous self-navigating flying systems can self-design ?

    No, I am saying there is still so much that we do not know yet. It is far too soon for us to say with any certainty that it could not have happened so there is no reason not to continue with the research.

  32. 32
    ET says:

    seversky:

    It is far too soon for us to say with any certainty that it could not have happened so there is no reason not to continue with the research.

    Nonsense. We know the life was designed with the same certainty that we know Stonehenge was designed. We know that nature cannot produce life from inanimate matter with the same certainty we know that nature cannot produce Stonehenges.

  33. 33
    ET says:

    seversky:

    Tell us, did he specify using a process to store and copy the “blueprint” which would mutate at random away from the original specification such that descendant replicants would bear little or no resemblance to the original?

    Too bad DNA isn’t such a blueprint as DNA does not determine form.

  34. 34
    Seversky says:

    Marfin@ 26

    Seversky at 16 – By that twisted logic nothing is impossible , virgin births, raising the dead , walking on water , lead into gold,time machines,flying pigs,something coming from nothing , everything is possible given enough time. This makes a mockery of the scientific method as any experimental failures can be brushed aside with, we just need more time, so nothing is falsifiable, and science becomes pointless in this bizaro world of yours.

    Do you know for certain that there is an intelligent being some call God who created this entire Universe out of nothing? I would say that, whatever you might believe you don’t know. I note that it is impossible by definition to get something from nothing.

    Do I know that life developed from inanimate matter by some natural process? No, I don’t. Do I know that such a thing is impossible? No, I don’t and neither does anyone else. The only way to find out is through science.

  35. 35
    ET says:

    seversky:

    Do you know for certain that there is an intelligent being some call God who created this entire Universe out of nothing?

    Intelligent Design does not require God. But yes, the overwhelming evidence says the universe was intelligently designed.

    Do I know that life developed from inanimate matter by some natural process? No, I don’t. Do I know that such a thing is impossible?

    There isn’t any evidence that it could and there isn’t even a way to test the claim. It is a claim based on faith and ignorance.

  36. 36
    Seversky says:

    Marfin@ 27

    Seversky -Why do you believe that the origin of life was just a product of nature without any design , we can all see the science does not point to that conclusion so why do you believe it.

    I see no persuasive evidence for an omniscient and omnipotent Intelligent Designer or God so the only alternative is some natural process.

  37. 37
    ET says:

    seversky:

    I see no persuasive evidence for an omniscient and omnipotent Intelligent Designer or God so the only alternative is some natural process.

    Total nonsense, as usual. Natural processes only exist in nature and therefore could not have produced nature. Also ID does NOT require an omniscient and omnipotent Intelligent Designer or God, so it is clearly an alternative to that scenario. And finally what seversky doesn’t see is irrelevant to reality.

  38. 38

    Tell us, did he specify using a process to store and copy the “blueprint” which would mutate at random away from the original specification such that descendant replicants would bear little or no resemblance to the original?

    So your answer to my question is “yes” the gene system is a multi-referent symbol system and a necessary set of interpretive constraints; and indeed “yes” that symbol system was the whole point of the organization enabling autonomous open-ended self-replication. Is that right?

    When you verify, I will get to your counter question.

  39. 39

    .
    You are not going to do it in earnest, are you Sev?

    No, of course not.

    Your “Yes, but” answer is likely the best you can do.

    As protective and disingenuous as it may be, it’s still a tacit concession to the empirical evidence you always deny.

    But don’t worry Seversky, none of the design proponents you come here to insult will actually expect you to remember this little concession the next time you say ‘there’s no evidence’ of design in life. We all realize that you are too old and worn-in to get real about the evidence now. If it wasn’t for your steady contribution to the damage of science, it is likely that no one would care either way.

    ——————-

    EDIT: By the way Sev, von Neumann himself can answer your question. His goal was to understand the necessary conditions whereby the process of replication would “proceed in such a manner that each automaton will produce other automata which are more complex and of higher potentialities than itself”. So the answer is clearly “Yes”, he most certainly envisioned substantial changes over time, including entirely novel functions and structures not found in the original replicator. It was his specific goal to understand the logical and organizational requirements of a system where those kinds of entirely open-ended changes could occur.

  40. 40
    Ed George says:

    UBP

    But don’t worry Seversky, none of the design proponents you come here to insult…

    Do you have any examples of Seversky insulting anyone? He certainly disagrees with people but I have never seen him being anything other than polite and civil when he does so.

  41. 41
    ET says:

    Ed George:

    He certainly disagrees with people but I have never seen him being anything other than polite and civil when he does so.

    That settles it, then. 🙄

  42. 42
    DerekDiMarco says:

    @Ed: I started following this site the year before Dover. In the few years after that, things changed. Then I checked out for a long time and when I came back a few weeks ago I couldn’t remember my site name. That was like 3 laptops ago 🙂 The vast majority of people who were here at that time are long gone. But of the few who are left, only 2 or 3 routinely insult people. Seversky is not one of them.

  43. 43

    .
    Ed, anyone who takes the position that people should exercise reason in debate, then steadfastly refuses to acknowledge the critical points of the opposing position, is insulting. Anyone who speaks about the best practice of reason, those which he says save it from being a mere intellectual game, then turns around to do the very things he opposes, is indeed insulting. You may not consider it insulting to others to be disingenuous, but I think many would disagree.

    By the way Ed, do you ever say anything here that is not merely rhetorical in nature? Let me help you understand the point. Below is a post to you from a week ago, where, much like Sev, you were touting what a Paragon of Reason you are. So I asked this question about your treatment of evidence, which you refused to engage in earnest:

    Ed, a high-capacity symbol system was predicted to be fundamentally necessary for open-ended heritable self-replication. The system eventually discovered to be responsible for heritable self-replication in living beings was found to use a system of quiescent non-dynamic memory tokens, organized in a linear reading-frame code (like a language). It was then recorded in the scientific literature that, yes indeed, the gene code and symbolic language structure (including mathematics) are the only two examples of such a physical system found anywhere in the cosmos. You can quite easily follow this line of understanding from Charles Peirce to Alan Turing to John Von Neumann to Francis Crick to Howard Pattee. You can further flesh this out with the work of persons such Marshal Nirenberg, Sydney Brenner, Mahlon Hoagland, among many others – all dutifully recorded in the scientific literature. Ed, is the gene system that enables Life on Earth a symbol system using a high-capacity language structure, i.e. a reading frame code?

  44. 44
    Ed George says:

    UBP, OK, so anyone who disagrees with you, doesn’t accept your reasoning, or refuses to respond on demand to off topic questions, is insulting you. You must get insulted often.

  45. 45
    PeterA says:

    The same physical principles and even basic components are used for different functions in unrelated systems.
    The same microprocessor codes are used for different functions in different applications.
    The same assembler language instructions are used for different functions in different applications.
    The same C# or Java or C++ or another software development language syntax is used for different functions in different systems.
    But all the above cases are intelligently designed, at least the last time I checked it. 🙂
    The question is how can we assemble step-by-step the machinery underlying the flagellum?
    Has anybody done it yet in a lab? How did they do it? How easy it was to get it done?

  46. 46
    jawa says:

    Interesting discussion:

    Argument for evolution?

    The irreducible complex flagellum is made up of 25 proteins, 23 of which are found elsewhere performing different functions.

    Upright BiPed @ UD

    How many of them have to be specified in an irreducibly complex system of symbols and constraints before they ever appear on Earth in the first place? Are there any ID critics willing to address that question in earnest?

    If these proteins were likely to be specified in order to appear in the first place, and further, if they are also expected to be variable and evolve over subsequent generations, wouldn’t that entail that they be specified in a system that a) creates subsequent generations, and b) is capable of not only describing and producing whatever protein that it’s currently making, but also any variation of that protein as well?

    (You know, like how the known extant cell does it).

    Anyone?

    Wouldn’t that system — one capable of those things — also have to be self-referential as well, describing both its constraints and its variable products, like these proteins being discussed here?

    No?

    Martin_r @ UD

    in 2014, Suzan Mazur interviewed Jack Szostak – who is a Nobel laureate and worldwide known for his origin-of-life research.

    Harvard professor and Nobel laureate Jack Szostak said:

    “Life in Lab” In 3 – 5 Years … And more likely within three years.”

    again, Szostak said that in 2014.

    Now is almost 2020 and Szostak has nothing …

    Moreover, Szostak retracted his 2016 NATURE paper on origin-of-life research…

    RetractionWatch.com:

    “Definitely embarrassing:” Nobel Laureate retracts non-reproducible paper in Nature journal”

    “A Nobel Laureate has retracted a 2016 paper in Nature Chemistry that explored the origins of life on earth, after discovering the main conclusions were not correct. ”

    https://retractionwatch.com/2017/12/05/definitely-embarrassing-nobel-laureate-retracts-non-reproducible-paper-nature-journal/

    PeterA @ UD

    The same physical principles and even basic components are used for different functions in unrelated systems.
    The same microprocessor codes are used for different functions in different applications.
    The same assembler language instructions are used for different functions in different applications.
    The same C# or Java or C++ or another software development language syntax is used for different functions in different systems.
    But all the above cases are intelligently designed, at least the last time I checked it. ????
    The question is how can we assemble step-by-step the machinery underlying the flagellum?
    Has anybody done it yet in a lab? How did they do it? How easy it was to get it done?

     
    But haven’t seen any serious response to the above questions.

     

  47. 47
    es58 says:

    Jawa@46 https://michaelprescott.typepad.com/michael_prescotts_blog/2007/08/its-alive.html
    This is a blog post from 2007 where they also say 3 to 5 years and quote szostak. . I believe he’s been saying it since he started his project but haven’t been able to document it earlier. Perhaps using way back?
    I think this line of work will give job security – for his great great grand children.

  48. 48

    .

    OK, so anyone who disagrees with you, doesn’t accept your reasoning, or refuses to respond on demand to off topic questions, is insulting you.

    Oh Ed, you missed by a country mile. I didn’t ask you anything general (as your interesting interpretation suggests), I asked you something very specific. You made the comment that “when something looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, walks like a duck and swims like a duck”, you have no problem in just calling it a “duck”. I question this image you see of yourself, and provided a duck in order to prove the point.

    Did Von Neumann describe a system of symbols and constraints as being fundamental to open-ended self-replication, or did he not, Ed? Did Crick and Brenner demonstrate a non-overlapping reading-frame code, or not? Is the establishment of that code physically separate from the reading of the codons? You just don’t want to deal with the fact that scientists have already used the language of physics to describe (in detail) the multi-referent symbol system in DNA. Clearly, if it doesn’t serve your purpose to do so, you wouldn’t call a duck “a duck” even if it were predicted, discovered, carefully confirmed, and quacked at you.

  49. 49
    ET says:

    Ed George is a scientifically illiterate coward. He will never engage in a discussion on science. He will only spew some nonsense and then never back it up.

  50. 50
    Ed George says:

    UBP

    Oh Ed, you missed by a country mile. I didn’t ask you anything general (as your interesting interpretation suggests), I asked you something very specific.

    No, I was responding to the following comment.

    Ed, anyone who takes the position that people should exercise reason in debate, then steadfastly refuses to acknowledge the critical points of the opposing position, is insulting.

    And my response was on target.

    Your other question about DNA was in a discussion about morality. As it was not relevant to the discussion on morality I chose not to respond. People here often choose not to respond to my questions and comments. As I am not so self-centred to believe that people should respond to my every question, I am not insulted by the lack of response.

  51. 51
    ET says:

    Ed George:

    And my response was on target.

    Only if the “target” was in another time zone from reality.

    Your other question about DNA was in a discussion about morality.

    The question was posed to demonstrate that you don’t know jack about a duck being a duck. And it succeeded.

  52. 52

    .
    Ed,

    I was responding to this comment: “When something looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, walks like a duck and swims like a duck, we have no problem concluding that it is a duck”.

    You were asked if these comments you made were germane to the conversation you were having. Your answer was “yes”.

    The reason you won’t answer the question is because of its content, not its timing.

  53. 53

    .
    By the way Ed, attempting to sell your refusal to answer as some violation of conversation etiquette would have been a lot more compelling if you had been willing to answer my “on-topic” questions — but you weren’t willing. You might remember:

    If a woman is being raped and murdered, in those few moments before she dies — oh ye bright wizards of enlightenment — she will need the consensus of the group in order to be absolutely certain that the brutalization she feels is valid. It is only in the context of that consensus …

    I asked you directly: “She needs a consensus to know for certain that its valid, doesn’t she” — and again, you refused to answer.

  54. 54
    Ed George says:

    UBP

    I asked you directly: “She needs a consensus to know for certain that its valid, doesn’t she” — and again, you refused to answer.

    I don’t answer loaded questions.

  55. 55
    vividbleau says:

    UBP
    “I don’t answer loaded questions”

    Translation, I don’t answer questions that require me to acknowledge the logical implications of my position.

    Vivid

  56. 56

    .
    correct

    Edit: …and it doesn’t matter whether the topic is morality, empirical observation, or the recorded history of science. Ed’s views are to be protected from any examination.

  57. 57
    john_a_designer says:

    However, that is how interlocutors like Ed obfuscate.

  58. 58
    Ed George says:

    15 yards and first down for piling on. 🙂

  59. 59
    Reapers Plague says:

    All I see here, at least for the most recent comments, are people trying to belittle each other. Doesn’t sound like a constructive way to have a discussion.

  60. 60
    jawa says:

    Apparently UD has lost internet traffic lately, according to Alexa ranking:

    UD 828,206
    SW 1,022,449
    PT 1,617,067
    TSZ 3,829,518
    PS 6,720,129

  61. 61
    es58 says:

    Jawa @ 46:

    Here’s UD link to Boston Globe article (behind paywall) announcing Harvard OOL initiative with Szostak from Aug 2005. So, he’s in at least the 14th year of his 3 to 5 year plan to figure out OOL. (Reminds me of the Chinese 5 year plans. they never end) – but, it’s a good way to continually mislead your donors to think something will happen very soon – but, no one would ever do that, would they?

    http://archive.boston.com/news....._launched/

  62. 62
    Marfin says:

    Seversky 34,36 So you position ultimately is a position of faith and I have no problem with that if you wish to BELIEVE nature did it thats fine as long as you are honest and accept its a position of faith you hold not a position of fact.
    Personally I BELIEVE universe`s coming from nothing, a universe with design ,life without design,etc etc much more problematic and harder to believe than the counter position.

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