Intelligent Design

Evolution is a Scientific Fact: A Proposition

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Evolutionists disagree amongst themselves about the theory of evolution but they agree about the fact of evolution. If there is one point of agreement within evolution-dom, it is that evolution is a scientific fact. A few years after Darwin died Joseph Le Conte explained that evolution is a law, not a theory, and it is a law to which every department of natural studies must adhere. It is not merely as certain as gravity, “Nay, it is far more certain.” Similarly, Teilhard de Chardin maintained that “evolution is a light which illuminates all facts, a trajectory which all lines of thought must follow—this is what evolution is.”  Read more

12 Replies to “Evolution is a Scientific Fact: A Proposition

  1. 1
    above says:

    On Dr. Hunter’s blog I found the following quote by what appeared to be a darwinist and wanted to hear people’s opinion on the matter:

    “Evolution is a fact because we directly observe it (the development of novel traits and speciation) in the lab and in nature. Experimentally, in a number of different ways, random mutation and recombination plus selection generates novel functions (sorry ID). Further, common descent is the best explanation for molecular and fossil phylogeny, shared organelles, endosymbionts, and common biochemistry and the semi-universal genetic code, for example.”

    Like I said in one of my original posts on this blog I a consider myself open to both ID and evolution and I’m interested in seeing where the evidence and dialogue will eventually lead.

    Is what this poster is saying empirically valid?

  2. 2
    bornagain77 says:

    above,,, and exactly what was his example of “novel” function and exactly what was the fitness cost of said novel function?

  3. 3
    above says:

    He provided the following allegedly as his references in a subsequent post:

    “Sympatric ecological speciation meets pyrosequencing: sampling the transcriptome of the apple maggot Rhagoletis pomonella.
    BMC Genomics. 2009 Dec 27;10:633.

    “BACKGROUND: The full power of modern genetics has been applied to the study of speciation in only a small handful of genetic model species–all of which speciated allopatrically. Here we report the first large expressed sequence tag (EST) study of a candidate for ecological sympatric speciation, the apple maggot Rhagoletis pomonella, using massively parallel pyrosequencing on the Roche 454-FLX platform. To maximize transcript diversity we created and sequenced separate libraries from larvae, pupae, adult heads, and headless adult bodies. RESULTS: We obtained 239,531 sequences which assembled into 24,373 contigs. A total of 6810 unique protein coding genes were identified among the contigs and long singletons, corresponding to 48% of all known Drosophila melanogaster protein-coding genes. Their distribution across GO classes suggests that we have obtained a representative sample of the transcriptome. Among these sequences are many candidates for potential R. pomonella “speciation genes” (or “barrier genes”) such as those controlling chemosensory and life-history timing processes. Furthermore, we identified important marker loci including more than 40,000 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) and over 100 microsatellites. An initial search for SNPs at which the apple and hawthorn host races differ suggested at least 75 loci warranting further work. We also determined that developmental expression differences remained even after normalization; transcripts expected to show different expression levels between larvae and pupae in D. melanogaster also did so in R. pomonella. Preliminary comparative analysis of transcript presences and absences revealed evidence of gene loss in Drosophila and gain in the higher dipteran clade Schizophora. CONCLUSIONS: These data provide a much needed resource for exploring mechanisms of divergence in this important model for sympatric ecological speciation. Our description of ESTs from a substantial portion of the R. pomonella transcriptome will facilitate future functional studies of candidate genes for olfaction and diapause-related life history timing, and will enable large scale expression studies. Similarly, the identification of new SNP and microsatellite markers will facilitate future population and quantitative genetic studies of divergence between the apple and hawthorn-infesting host races.”

    Rapid evolution and selection inferred from the transcriptomes of sympatric crater lake cichlid fishes.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20331780
    Mol Ecol. 2010 Mar;19 Suppl 1:197-211.

    Adaptive radiations: from field to genomic studies.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19528644
    Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2009 Jun 16;106 Suppl 1:9947-54. Epub 2009

    Evolution in the Drosophila ananassae species subgroup.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19377294
    Fly (Austin). 2009 Apr-Jun;3(2):157-69. Epub 2009 Apr 12. ”

    But when another poster (Lars) provided accounts of conflict, he swiftly dismissed them just by saying that one of the quotes was from the lawyer of ID…

    You can definitely get a better idea by reading the discussion directly from the other blog. However, do bear in mind that many of the responses by darwinists are infused with ad hominems.

  4. 4
    johnnyb says:

    above –

    There is a confusion that the poster is playing on that is common – that is, that *mutations* are the same as *random mutations*. They are not. The problem with biology in the last century is that mutations were *assumed* to be random, rather than demonstrating it.

    You might be interested in reading a paper I wrote on the subject.

    Basically, the evolutionary definition of randomness is that the chances that a mutation occurs is independent of the biological need of the organism. But in fact many mutations can be demonstrated to be counter to that.

    It appears, instead, that genomes seem to be formatted so that mutations which are likely to be needed are more likely to happen, and selection pressure can actually increase that likelihood.

    For one stark experiment, check out this paper. In it, Hall shows that an organism inserts a genetic sequence in the right spot to turn on a gene only under the correct selection pressure. If there is some meaning of “random mutation” there, I can’t find it.

    What’s really funny is that the mechanism which the evos think really demonstrates their point about natural selection’s ability to create novelty is in the adaptive immune system. I encourage you to read Falk’s essay which includes this, and then read my comments in the comment section below. Basically, the adaptive immune system focuses mutations on the correct 0.01% of the genome. Sure, it may be stochastic, *within* that 0.01%, but it seems uncharitable to call a process that skips 99.99% of the genome to focus mutations on 0.01% a “random” mutation.

    Of course, they must, because their theory relies on it.

  5. 5
    above says:

    JohnnyB,

    Your insight is very helpful. Correct me if I am wrong but it seems to me that you are saying that epigenetic influence plays a very important role in the diversity and development of life. Am I getting it right?

    I will read your article and the one you linked on cryptic genes later and see if there is anything else I might need clarification with.

    Thanks for the help.

  6. 6
    bornagain77 says:

    above, rapid adaptations, within a species no less, is definitely a mark against neo-darwinian evolution. As johnnyb has clearly pointed out these “rapid adaptations” are clear evidence of changes that were “designed” changes, changes that reflected anticipation within the genome for the change to be needed and thus clearly reflect the fingerprint of “a designer”. The thing that crushes evolution is that all “speciation” events always come at a cost of functional information in the genome. This is usually measurable, for the vast majority of times, as a loss of Genetic diversity, for example:

    In The differences of human races we find that the younger races (Chinese, Europeans, American Indians, etc.. etc..) are losing genetic information when compared to the original race of humans which is thought to have migrated out of east Africa some 50,000 years ago.

    “We found an enormous amount of diversity within and between the African populations, and we found much less diversity in non-African populations,” Tishkoff told attendees today (Jan. 22) at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science in Anaheim. “Only a small subset of the diversity in Africa is found in Europe and the Middle East, and an even narrower set is found in American Indians.” Tishkoff; Andrew Clark, Penn State; Kenneth Kidd, Yale University; Giovanni Destro-Bisol, University “La Sapienza,” Rome, and Himla Soodyall and Trefor Jenkins, WITS University, South Africa, looked at three locations on DNA samples from 13 to 18 populations in Africa and 30 to 45 populations in the remainder of the world.-

    I wonder what Hitler would have thought of that study above?

    Yet this loss of information is also measurable by the fitness test:

    For a broad outline of the “Fitness test”, required to be passed to show a violation of the principle of Genetic Entropy, please see the following video and articles:

    Is Antibiotic Resistance evidence for evolution? – “The Fitness Test” – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/3995248

    Testing the Biological Fitness of Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria – 2008
    http://www.answersingenesis.or.....-drugstore

    Thank Goodness the NCSE Is Wrong: Fitness Costs Are Important to Evolutionary Microbiology
    Excerpt: it (an antibiotic resistant bacterium) reproduces slower than it did before it was changed. This effect is widely recognized, and is called the fitness cost of antibiotic resistance. It is the existence of these costs and other examples of the limits of evolution that call into question the neo-Darwinian story of macroevolution.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....s_wro.html

    List Of Degraded Molecular Abilities Of Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria:
    http://www.trueorigin.org/bacteria01.asp

    This “fitness test” fairly conclusively demonstrates “optimal information” was originally encoded within a “parent” bacteria/bacterium by God, and has not been added to by any “teleological” methods in the beneficial adaptations of the sub-species of bacteria. Thus the inference to Genetic Entropy, i.e. that God has not specifically moved within nature in a teleological manner, to gradually increase the functional information of a genome, still holds as true for the principle of Genetic Entropy.

    The key thing to focus on above, to protect yourself from falling for any of neo-Darwinian deceptions, is information, for instance the ability of material processes to generate information is so overwhelming that Dr. Abel has put forth a null hypothesis for information generation:

    The Capabilities of Chaos and Complexity: David L. Abel – Null Hypothesis For Information Generation – 2009
    To focus the scientific community’s attention on its own tendencies toward overzealous metaphysical imagination bordering on “wish-fulfillment,” we propose the following readily falsifiable null hypothesis, and invite rigorous experimental attempts to falsify it: “Physicodynamics cannot spontaneously traverse The Cybernetic Cut: physicodynamics alone cannot organize itself into formally functional systems requiring algorithmic optimization, computational halting, and circuit integration.” A single exception of non trivial, unaided spontaneous optimization of formal function by truly natural process would falsify this null hypothesis.
    http://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/10/1/247/pdf
    http://mdpi.com/1422-0067/10/1/247/ag

    Above,,,does that help answer some of your questions?

    as well above, you can click on my handle and it will take you to a paper that addresses many of these issues.

  7. 7
    bornagain77 says:

    correction: for instance, the inability/ of material processes to generate any information whatsoever is so overwhelming

  8. 8
    above says:

    Thanks BA,

    You’ve answered some questions but also created new ones lol

    This I found interesting:
    Is Antibiotic Resistance evidence for evolution? – “The Fitness Test” – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/3995248

    How does darwinism explain that?

    Also, the last article you posted, which I quickly skimmed over seems to be a very interesting approach to information generation

    It seems like I have a lot of reading to do though.

  9. 9
    bornagain77 says:

    above, evolutionists hate the fitness test, Yet it is a solid test you can take to the bank as to seeing if functional information over and “above” what was already present. If evolution were true there should be litterally hundreds of thousands of such violations of the fitness test swimming in the literature.

    As well in further reference to “rapid adaptations”. Evolutionists will always point to these examples, hoping you buy that it was a totally random” occurrence, which it never is, and also while never disclosing to you that if we continue to “push” the “novel” adaptation in any direction, so as to try a truly novel speciation event, the “sub”-species will always run into a brick wall that limits its variation:

    “Whatever we may try to do within a given species, we soon reach limits which we cannot break through. A wall exists on every side of each species. That wall is the DNA coding, which permits wide variety within it (within the gene pool, or the genotype of a species)-but no exit through that wall. Darwin’s gradualism is bounded by internal constraints, beyond which selection is useless.” R. Milner, Encyclopedia of Evolution (1990)

    At one of her many public talks, she [Lynn Margulis] asks the molecular biologists in the audience to name a single unambiguous example of the formation of a new species by the accumulation of mutations. Her challenge goes unmet.
    Michael Behe – Darwin’s Black Box – Page 26

    Natural Selection and Evolution’s Smoking Gun, – American Scientist – 1997
    “A matter of unfinished business for biologists is the identification of evolution’s smoking gun,”… “the smoking gun of evolution is speciation, not local adaptation and differentiation of populations.” Keith Stewart Thomson – evolutionary biologist

    “The central question of the Chicago conference was whether the mechanisms underlying microevolution can be extrapolated to explain the phenomena of macroevolution. At the risk of doing violence to the position of some people at the meeting, the answer can be given as a clear, No.”
    Roger Lewin – Historic Chicago “Macroevolution” conference of 1980

    Evolution? – The Deception Of Unlimited Variation – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4113898

    As well, materialists never mention the fact that the variations found in nature (such as peppered moth color and finch beak size) which are often touted as solid proof of evolution are always found to be cyclical in nature. i.e. The variations are found to vary around a median position with never a continual deviation from the norm. This blatant distortion/omission of evidence led Phillip Johnson to comment in the Wall Street Journal:

    “When our leading scientists have to resort to the sort of distortion that would land a stock promoter in jail, you know they are in trouble.”

  10. 10
    bornagain77 says:

    Above I noticed he had a cichlid study listed. This expert in cichlid would beg to differ:

    Cichlid Fish – Evolution or Variation Within Kind? – Dr. Arthur Jones – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4036852

    Further studies find that ancient lineages always have a greater propensity to rapidly radiate, which is exactly what the “top down” genetic entropy model predicts:

    African cichlid fish: a model system in adaptive radiation research:
    “The African cichlid fish radiations are the most diverse extant animal radiations and provide a unique system to test predictions of speciation and adaptive radiation theory(of evolution).—-surprising implication of the study?—- the propensity to radiate was significantly higher in lineages whose precursors emerged from more ancient adaptive radiations than in other lineages”
    http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.g.....d=16846905

    More evidence for rapid radiations from a parent species can be found here:

    Biological Variation – Cornelius Hunter
    Excerpt: One hint that biology would not cooperate with Darwin’s theory came from the many examples of rapidly adapting populations. What evolutionists thought would require thousands or millions of years has been observed in laboratories and in the field, in an evolutionary blink of an eye. http://www.darwinspredictions......_variation

  11. 11
    johnnyb says:

    above –

    “it seems to me that you are saying that epigenetic influence plays a very important role in the diversity and development of life. Am I getting it right?”

    Almost. These are actual *genetic* mutations. What influences these mutations are probably a combination of genetic and epigenetic factors, but the changes themselves are straight genetic mutations – but they are not random (in the evolutionary sense) because they are focused in areas likely to be beneficial to the organism. Epigenetics probably plays a major role in diversification as well, but I’m not as current with the epigenetic literature.

    A good book on this is Caporale’s The Implicit Genome. Caporale also has a review paper covering many of those topics that we’ve summarized here.

    Another good paper to read is Barbara Wright’s A Biochemical Mechanism for Nonrandom Mutations and Evolution. When reading the paper, ask yourself, “might have the codon choices been designed so that mutations which have a higher probability of providing beneficial diversity are more likely to show up?” This would be a very interesting usage of the redundancy available within the genetic code. Barbara Wright has made a career of demonstrating her mechanism, and a search of “BE Wright[Author]” in pubmed will bring up many of her papers.

  12. 12
    Robert Byers says:

    Evolution has never been witnessed . Life changing its looks has not been witnessed and so evolution is not some rock solid fact.
    All that is witnessed is diversity in life and the clear need for a mechanism. It just seems reasonable that the mechanism is as Darwin said. Plus they can’t imagine another one.
    This biblical creationist says there is another mechanism for the , relatively, minor adaptions upon original biblical kinds.
    My point is that these evolution thumpers are not seeing a persuasive case for evolution as they might sincerely imagine but rather they just see diveserity that must of come from natural mechanism. They can’t imagine a more limited mechanism on a original origin and boundary that was created.
    The old evolutionists were just not that smart.

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