Intelligent Design

Kudos to Larry Moran

Spread the love

In a comment over at Sandwalk Larry writes:

Bill says,

But the point is moot. ID is not a scientific endeavor. Never has been. It’s a political movement with a social agenda to inject religion into American public schools. Simple as that.

The debate took place in Canada where we allow the teaching of religion in public schools. None of us give a damn about the American Constitution. We’re interesting in knowing whether the science is valid or not.

If the Intelligent Design proponents have legitimate complaints about evolution and if they have good scientific arguments in favor of design then those ideas should be taught in Canadian schools in spite of what some judge in Pennsylvania said ten years ago.

Lawrence Krauss tried to show that ID was not science but he did a horrible job. Meyer countered by presenting a lot of science forcing Krauss to deal with the very science that he said ID doesn’t do!

Bill, you are being dangerously naive if you think you can simply dismiss the ID movement because it’s not science (according to your definition). The general public doesn’t care. All they see is serious attacks on evolution that look a lot like science.

Yes, ID is a movement and so are the desires to do something about climate change or GMO’s. There are lots of “movements” with social and political agenda. Many of them deal with science in one way of another. It’s the role of scientists to evaluate the scientific arguments in spite of the agenda. We have to show that the goal of the movement is either compatible or incompatible with the scientific facts.

 

 

 

 

75 Replies to “Kudos to Larry Moran

  1. 1
    Andre says:

    Prof Moran has to play nice one of his fellow goons made them all look stupid. I really enjoyed the expose of the garden variety atheist, no substance whatsoever.

  2. 2
    bFast says:

    Andre, I think your critique, “no substance whatsoever” of Dr. Moran’s remarks are unfair — unless I read you wrong.

    Larry Moran is inviting us to the table. I think he believes that he will fleece us of all our hard-earned capital, but he is giving us a seat. ‘Funny thing is that Larry Moran recognizes that natural selection has little power. He instead proposes that random drift, frequently without selection (or with neutral selection) solves the problem. Having said that, I am baffled at the idea that randomness without selection can produce much beyond, well, variety. (I do think it may say a lot about Denton’s leaves, however.)

  3. 3
    Zachriel says:

    bFast: Funny thing is that Larry Moran recognizes that natural selection has little power.

    Natural selection is an important mechanism of evolution. — Larry Moran

    http://bioinfo.med.utoronto.ca.....ident.html

  4. 4
    Querius says:

    While some people might use ID or anything else to further an agenda, at its core, ID is a paradigm similar in kind to Darwinism and its modern derivatives.

    ID is simply a presumption of design for purposes of investigation when something appears designed. This presumption seems to enhance scientific progress better than a presumption of random change with a slight bias to NS.

    -Q

  5. 5
    Robert Byers says:

    Dr Moran said the right thing and said it very well.
    Dr Moran is a confident evolutionist and denier of gods fingerprints on nature.
    Simply he thinks his side can take on ID/YEC on the merits before audiences.
    he thinks his side should prevail on the case.
    They can’t.
    Yank evos are less confident. Possibly seeing the common people as not smart enough and so they insist on state censorship.

    censorship on creationism or anything is illegal in america. however at present its not enforced.
    Creationists need to bring cases before the people and the courts(ones based on ability and not identity and liberal convictions already settled).

    HeY. Why not a debate between Dr Moran and a high rank iD person on very specific points. ?!
    Pay for view.

  6. 6
    Andre says:

    Bfast…

    Prof Moran is doing damage control. He has to because like I said one of his fellow goons made them all look like idiots. It has to be said that Prof Moran has certainly softened up to ID and for that I say kudos. As for no substance…. Does atheism carry any substance?

    Atheism is the big self delusion.

  7. 7
    Andre says:

    Q

    That is the heart of the matter. How does one test random?

  8. 8
    ellazimm says:

    Andre

    That is the heart of the matter. How does one test random?

    There are many tests for number sequences.

    Start here and follow the links for further discussion.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Randomness_tests

  9. 9
    Andre says:

    There are many tests for number sequences sure…. I will ask again…. How does one test random?

  10. 10
    ellazimm says:

    Andre

    How does one test random?

    What kind of random? Did you look over the article?

  11. 11
    Andre says:

    I did of course here is what you need to consider. How do we test that life is random?

  12. 12
    ellazimm says:

    Andre

    How do we test that life is random?

    Mutations are radom with respect to fitness. Selection is not random.

    Are you asking how do you test that mutations are random with respect to fitness?

  13. 13
    bFast says:

    Zachriel (3), I have dialogued extensively with Larry Moran about natural selection here and on his site. He is very clear to declare that the value attributed to natural selection by mainstream biology is very overblown in his opinion. He holds that his pet theory, drift, plays a much more important role than NS does. He holds that drift alone accounts for speciation (I think he may be right) and that drift alone can account for new biological systems. Further, he cannot envision that NS plays a role in drift by rating each drifting mutation as nearly neutral.

    Does Larry Moran see a role for NS in biology? Yes, I believe he does. Is it a quote mine, taking an expression out of context to increase its importance, to say “Natural selection is an important mechanism of evolution”? That too.

  14. 14
    Zachriel says:

    bFast: He is very clear to declare that the value attributed to natural selection by mainstream biology is very overblown in his opinion.

    There are very few strict selectionists in mainstream biology today.

    bFast: He holds that his pet theory, drift, plays a much more important role than NS does.

    Moran is correct to point out that much, if not most of evolution is non-selective, particularly on the molecular level. On the other hand, he agrees selection is essential to adaptation. So he agrees that natural selection has “power”, but not that it is the primary mechanism of evolution. Even adaptations under selection are subject to drift.

    bFast: Is it a quote mine, taking an expression out of context to increase its importance, to say “Natural selection is an important mechanism of evolution”?

    Quote-mine? Seriously? What do you think he meant by “Natural selection is an important mechanism of evolution”?

    Larry Moran: The controversy is over how much of evolution is due to drift and how much is due to natural selection. Excellent arguments have been advanced to prove that most of evolution is due to random genetic drift and that’s the position I take. Thus, in a discussion about the role of chance and accident in evolution I would say that most of evolution is accidental because of the frequency of drift vs. selection. Note that this says nothing about the perceived importance of these mechanisms. That’s a value judgement.

    An example is seen in Lenski’s Long-term Evolution Experiment. MOST cases of genetic fixation were due to drift. SOME were due to adaptation. And a very FEW were due to chance contingent events in some lines that were followed by adaptation. There is a role for chance, which constitutes most of evolution, and a role for adaptation.

  15. 15
    Andre says:

    Except mutations are not random

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22522932

    If it is fit it survives, and if it survives it’s fit…. round and round we go….

  16. 16
    ellazimm says:

    Andre #15

    Except mutations are not random

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22522932

    Interesting. I have heard of similar results. Doesn’t mean the mutations are guided or directed though. Let’s wait and see if the results are sustained and replicated.

    If it is fit it survives, and if it survives it’s fit…. round and round we go….

    Lots and lots of variants don’t survive. Did you know that something like a quarter to a third of human pregnancies spontaneously abort? That’s a lot of waste for a ‘designed’ system.

  17. 17
    Zachriel says:

    Andre: Except mutations are not random

    The rate is not random across the genome, however, the specific mutations are still random.

    “Our observations suggest that the mutation rate has been evolutionarily optimized to reduce the risk of deleterious mutations.”

  18. 18
    ellazimm says:

    Zach #17

    The rate is not random across the genome, however, the specific mutations are still random.

    Damn! I should have said that!!

    ‘Hot’ mutation regions do not mean the process is directed. It means that genomes with the propensity to mutate in certain regions have been selected against.

  19. 19
    Mung says:

    What does “random with respect to fitness” even tell us, if anything.

    Most mutations are neutral or nearly neutral. Random with respect to fitness tells us nothing useful about the processes of evolution.

  20. 20
    ellazimm says:

    Munger #19

    What does “random with respect to fitness” even tell us, if anything.

    It means that mutations in the genome do not favour those which are beneficial to fitness.

    Sometimes you ask questions which are easily answered if you bothered to look them up.

    Most mutations are neutral or nearly neutral. Random with respect to fitness tells us nothing useful about the processes of evolution.

    It tells us that evolutionary processes are undirected. Which seems to be a point of contention.

  21. 21
    wd400 says:

    What does “random with respect to fitness” even tell us, if anything.

    Well, one of the favourite pre-falsified hypotheses around these parts is that organisms induce specific mutations when faced with a new environment. Tests that show mutations are random with respect to fitness tell us those ideas are false.

  22. 22
    Andre says:

    Yet even with such a high spontaneous abortion rate here we are heading to 8 000 000 000 people. I would say the system is not perfect but it is tov.

    Of course the evolutionary narrative can’t even explain how the reproductive process happened… only that it emerged…… but let us not get hung up on the details. Let us just accept it was a chance event.

  23. 23
    Querius says:

    I’d imagine that if evolution were powered solely by random mutations, genetic drift of some kind, and a small amount of natural selection, we’d find a lot of “junk” DNA, specifically DNA with no current function. When encountering an unknown structure, we’d be safe in assuming that it’s “vestigial” (as once termed), a vestige of bygone evolution.

    -Q

  24. 24
    ellazimm says:

    Andre #22

    Of course the evolutionary narrative can’t even explain how the reproductive process happened… only that it emerged…… but let us not get hung up on the details. Let us just accept it was a chance event.

    I haven’t heard the ID explanation of how the reproductive process happened. “It was designed” doesn’t explain how it was designed and implemented. You don’t get to have a double standard.

  25. 25
    Andre says:

    How it was designed is what we call reverse engineering. In biomemetics we are already reverse engineering some of the mechanics of biology. How is a matter of time from a design perspective. From a Darwinian perspective we should just accept it as a random chance event and not really bother with how because after all we are merely an insignificant accident.

  26. 26
    ellazimm says:

    Andre #25

    How it was designed is what we call reverse engineering. In biomemetics we are already reverse engineering some of the mechanics of biology. How is a matter of time from a design perspective.

    Reverse engineered from what? Are you saying ‘the designer’ had previous examples to work from?

    From a Darwinian perspective we should just accept it as a random chance event and not really bother with how because after all we are merely an insignificant accident.

    Selection has honed existing life forms to (sometimes exquisitely) match their environmental niches. We are NOT accidents, we are the product of millions and millions of years of trial and error, refinement upon refinement. We weren’t destined to occur, we weren’t consciously designed, if you started the whole process over again there’s no way to say whether or not we’d evolve again (what if the dinosaurs hadn’t been wiped out?). We are part of the great, glorious web of life that exists on earth. We share genetic information with every single living thing, we are all cousins. I find that a marvellous and uplifting thought. It makes me want to treat my fellow living things with care and respect, other humans most of all. (I’m willing to wipe out some viruses though, nasty parasitic things. But even they have played their part in bringing us about.)

    Your view seems very narrow: without a designer there is no point. I say: there is meaning and glory all around you. It is in you, in almost every cell in your body there is a record of where we came from. It’s miraculous.

  27. 27
    Andre says:

    Selection selected? Really? Do you actually believe selection selects? Let’s get something straight so you know where I stand. No matter what, mud can not magically become alive by itself. Someone arranged it to become alive. Pasteurised proved that along time ago.

    Life only comes from life. Scientifically proven fact.

  28. 28
    ellazimm says:

    Andre #27

    Selection selected? Really? Do you actually believe selection selects? Let’s get something straight so you know where I stand. No matter what, mud can not magically become alive by itself. Someone arranged it to become alive. Pasteurised proved that along time ago.

    Life only comes from life. Scientifically proven fact.

    Well, if you’ve already made up your mind then there’s no point in having a discussion is there?

    What I believe is that cumulative selection acting on randomly generated variation can create new morphologies which are better able to exploit their environments. Personally I don’t know how life got started but I know there is some interesting work being done to discover possible ways it happened.

    ‘Pasteurised’ proved that? Really?

  29. 29
    Mung says:

    ellazim:

    It means that mutations in the genome do not favour those which are beneficial to fitness.

    All you have done is restate the claim that mutations are random with respect to fitness. That’s not particularly helpful.

    ellazim:

    It tells us that evolutionary processes are undirected. Which seems to be a point of contention.

    It tell us no such thing. At most it perhaps tells us that they are undirected with regard to fitness. And as I said above, most mutations are neutral or nearly neutral.

    So it tells us nothing about the majority of evolution to say that mutations are random with respect to fitness.

  30. 30
    Mung says:

    wd400: Tests that show mutations are random with respect to fitness tell us those ideas are false.

    No it doesn’t. See my post @29.

  31. 31
    ellazimm says:

    Mung #29

    All you have done is restate the claim that mutations are random with respect to fitness. That’s not particularly helpful.

    Well, I think the meaning is pretty clear.

    It tell us no such thing. At most it perhaps tells us that they are undirected with regard to fitness. And as I said above, most mutations are neutral or nearly neutral.

    Undirected means that some are ‘good’, some are ‘bad’ and some are neutral.

    What does ‘nearly neutral’ mean?

    So it tells us nothing about the majority of evolution to say that mutations are random with respect to fitness.

    It tells us they are undirected. No design involved.

  32. 32
    Mung says:

    ellazimm: It tells us they are undirected. No design involved.

    It does not tell us that all mutations are undirected, which is what you were claiming.

  33. 33
    Mung says:

    Imagine an archer shooting arrows which consistently miss a target attached to a tree. Meanwhile, strewn about on the ground are numerous small animals pierced by arrows.

    An observer quips, what a random shooter that archer is!

    Doh.

    But surely the shots were random with respect to that target on the tree. Therefore all the shots were unguided.

  34. 34
    ellazimm says:

    Mung #32

    It does not tell us that all mutations are undirected, which is what you were claiming.

    If they occur at random intervals then how can you assume some might be directed?

    You have to prove some mutations are directed, you don’t get that for nothing.

  35. 35
    Mung says:

    ellizam: You have to prove some mutations are directed, you don’t get that for nothing.

    All I have to do is show that your argument is a non-sequitur, and that is precisely what I have done.

  36. 36
    ellazimm says:

    Mung #35

    All I have to do is show that your argument is a non-sequitur, and that is precisely what I have done.

    Doesn’t mean any mutations are directed. Picking on statements by a non-professional on a minor blog doesn’t prove a thing.

    The truth is: mutations are random with respect to fitness and they are undirected.

  37. 37
    wd400 says:

    Hi Mung,

    That’s like, Joe-level stupid. Sometimes I wonder if you are a troll.

  38. 38
    Andre says:

    The damn auto spell check, it is (Pasteur) that proved biogenesis is a undisputed fact. Secondly random mutations as you envision them in your mind must firstly get through multiple checks and balances before your random mutations happen, stuff like; error correction systems, PCD, necrosis, the immune system and a host of other systems processes in the cell that prevent random from happening. When these systems break down random does happens and it’s called cancer.

  39. 39
    Andre says:

    You see…. How does random build an evolutionary conserved system in the cell that prevent random from happening? If you believe that unguided processes can produce their own checks and balances and build these systems in any randon way, you’re not only daft you are a bona fide idiot.

    To believe in such miracles requires a ridiculous amount of faith. I personally don’t have enough faith to believe that.

  40. 40
    Indiana Effigy says:

    wd400: “That’s like, Joe-level stupid.”

    Ouch. But at least it’s not Virgil-level stupid.

  41. 41
    Mung says:

    wd400:

    Hi Mung,

    That’s like, Joe-level stupid. Sometimes I wonder if you are a troll.

    I don’t often receive such compliments. Thank you.

  42. 42
    ellazimm says:

    Andre #38

    The damn auto spell check, it is (Pasteur) that proved biogenesis is a undisputed fact.

    But that means there had to have been an ever-existing life form which gave ‘birth’ to all others. And where is this ultimate seed? The father of all?

    Secondly random mutations as you envision them in your mind must firstly get through multiple checks and balances before your random mutations happen, stuff like; error correction systems, PCD, necrosis, the immune system and a host of other systems processes in the cell that prevent random from happening. When these systems break down random does happens and it’s called cancer.

    “[T]hat prevent random from happening.” “[R]andom does happens . . . ”

    Random is not a noun.

    I agree that there are some amazing error correcting processes in living cells. But it is also clear that copying errors do occur and can affect morphology. And it doesn’t always result in cancer. You are hideously oversimplifying the situation.

    You see…. How does random build an evolutionary conserved system in the cell that prevent random from happening? If you believe that unguided processes can produce their own checks and balances and build these systems in any randon way, you’re not only daft you are a bona fide idiot.

    “How does random build . . . that prevent random from happening?” “[I}n any randon way . . . ”

    You really need to work on your typing.

    It happens through generation after generation of trial and error. Hundreds upon hundreds of attempts. Each generation throws up some variation on an established plan and those that work a bit better tend to produce more offspring and perpetrate their variation.

    To believe in such miracles requires a ridiculous amount of faith. I personally don’t have enough faith to believe that.

    That’s fine with me. But why are you calling me an idiot? You are not just expressing a belief, you are claiming a truth. There’s a big difference.

    I believe you are sincere and honest in your beliefs. But that doesn’t make you right and it doesn’t excuse your casting aspersions on those who disagree with you. That’s just prejudice.

  43. 43
    Andre says:

    I don’t believe that living systems are designed I acknowledge that they are, this is obviously from my experience in engineering. Do I know I might be wrong? Of course but I would bet my kidney I’m not.

    Nice one on saying nothing about all checks and balances, correction systems and redundancy that are all evolutionary conserved and the fact that your position posits that they emerged…. aka poofed out of thin air. If your only gripe with me is my spelling then you really have NOTHING.

    There you go again… if it’s fit it survives and if it survives it’s fit. That merry go round in your head is a bit stuck. …

  44. 44
    Andre says:

    Last thing

    Sorry the truth hurt your feelings. Next thing you are probably going to call me a bigot and preach to me about being judgemental. Go right ahead truth cares nothing for how you feel about it.

  45. 45
    Querius says:

    Good points, Andre.

    And there’s also the problem of reproduction rates and sexual maturity. For example, what’s more evolved–bunnies or people?

    -Q

  46. 46
    Daniel King says:

    wd400:

    Hi Mung,

    That’s like, Joe-level stupid. Sometimes I wonder if you are a troll.

    Mung:

    I don’t often receive such compliments. Thank you.

    Mung has earned them.

  47. 47
    Querius says:

    Mung @33,

    You make an interesting point.

    From one perspective, the arrows seem randomly distributed, from another perspective they seem carefully aimed. So, if one had to choose an explanation for the locations of the arrow-mutations choosing to ascribe it to random placement, obscures the information represented in the event.

    To use another analogy, most people wouldn’t accept that a series of random events involving a pistol, a broken window, lead bullets and a corpse with unnatural holes in it were sue to a series of random events.

    Nevertheless, there’s no doubt that some people would argue that given the multiverse, the conclusion that the events were random, might be supportable.

    But would make for lousy police work (and lousy science).

    -Q

  48. 48
    Mung says:

    Daniel King: Mung has earned them.

    Hi Troll!

  49. 49
    Mung says:

    Thanks Q.

    Random with respect to fitness is a statement about a particular correlation, or lack thereof, and at a specific time as well. To get from that to “evolution is unguided” occurs how, logically? I just want to see the logical argument, if it exists.

    You’d have to be omniscient and capable of peering into the future.

  50. 50
    ellazimm says:

    Andre #43

    I don’t believe that living systems are designed I acknowledge that they are, this is obviously from my experience in engineering. Do I know I might be wrong? Of course but I would bet my kidney I’m not.

    Well, lots of people with lots of experience in biological systems disagree with you. And I gotta think they know more about those kind of things than you do.

    Nice one on saying nothing about all checks and balances, correction systems and redundancy that are all evolutionary conserved and the fact that your position posits that they emerged…. aka poofed out of thin air. If your only gripe with me is my spelling then you really have NOTHING.

    Sigh. I guess you missed where I acknowledged that there are lots of checks and balances in the system. AND YET mutations (good, bad and neutral) do get through. That is indisputable.

    And no one is saying they poofed out of thin air. If you’re going to argue against something then don’t make stuff up.

    There you go again… if it’s fit it survives and if it survives it’s fit. That merry go round in your head is a bit stuck. …

    Are you saying that life forms that are better able to exploit natural resources and environments won’t leave more offspring on average?

    #44

    Sorry the truth hurt your feelings. Next thing you are probably going to call me a bigot and preach to me about being judgemental. Go right ahead truth cares nothing for how you feel about it.

    You didn’t hurt my feelings with your rudeness. I am merely pointing out that you are biased and proud of it.

    Mung #49

    Random with respect to fitness is a statement about a particular correlation, or lack thereof, and at a specific time as well. To get from that to “evolution is unguided” occurs how, logically? I just want to see the logical argument, if it exists.

    You’d have to be omniscient and capable of peering into the future.

    You could do some research into mutation rates rather than just wait for everything to be presented to you on this forum.

  51. 51
    Andre says:

    Wow because some people have a beef against the idea of design and it’s implications we should just trust them? Ever heard of the saying test everything?

    How did these systems emerge? Please do tell….

    So I’m not only a bigot and judgemental, a bad speller but I am also prideful and bias? Is that all you have? You still have nothing then.

    Yes and materialists are the proof…. You exploit the environment you have lots of resources yet you have fewer children. Materialists prove their own brand of what evolution is wrong everyday.

  52. 52
    Andre says:

    Have a read chap…

    You don’t even live your own beliefs….

    http://blogs.scientificamerica.....landslide/

  53. 53
    Andre says:

    You see you lot are breeding yourself out of contention worse still you’ve made your bed with the worst kind of radicalism that will come back and bite you lot soon, and before you know it godless heathens like yourself will be persecuted again. Materialists are their own worst enemies.

  54. 54
    Andre says:

    You see you lot are breeding yourself out of contention worse still you’ve made your bed with the worst kind of radicalism that will come back and bite you lot soon and before you know it godless heathens will be persecuted again. Materialists are their own worst enemies.Your preaching of tolorance is why secular societies like Belgium are being blown up by the very radicals you decided to tolorate. Tolorance breeds intolerance.

  55. 55
    Zachriel says:

    Mung: Imagine an archer shooting arrows which consistently miss a target attached to a tree. Meanwhile, strewn about on the ground are numerous small animals pierced by arrows. An observer quips, what a random shooter that archer is!

    That shows the observer doesn’t know what random means. If the arrows consistently miss the target, then they are not random with respect to the target.

  56. 56
    Mung says:

    I could just hug Larry Moran. I hope folks will treat him well when he returns here.

    Meyer is an opponent but not an enemy.

    – Larry Moran

  57. 57
    Mung says:

    ellazim: You could do some research into mutation rates rather than just wait for everything to be presented to you on this forum.

    ok, but how will looking at mutations rates tell me that evolution is unguided?

  58. 58
    Mung says:

    Zachriel:

    That shows the observer doesn’t know what random means. If the arrows consistently miss the target, then they are not random with respect to the target.

    How many arrows need to hit the target then before we can call them random with respect to the target?

    And then how do you tell that the arrows that do hit the target were not directed at the target?

  59. 59
    Zachriel says:

    Mung: How many arrows need to hit the target then before we can call them random with respect to the target?

    Your original claim concerned consistently missing the target, which is the opposite of randomness.

    To answer your question, the usual way is to look at the entire spread. The parameters are bias and variability. Let’s say we have a well-defined statistical spread around a high point on the outer band of the target. This could be due to 1) the archer shooting at that point; 2) bias in the archer’s aim; 3) the archer occasionally aiming elsewhere, but in a statistically insignificant manner.

    Statistically, that’s all we can say. The usual method at that point is to gather evidence about the archer.

    “Hey Archer, you seem to be aiming high. Try aiming lower.”

    “Um, okay.”

    {Now we observe a statistical spread around the center of the target.}

    Considering mutations, we have millions of mutations that form a statistical distribution that is random with respect to fitness. That implies that, if there is the occasional targeting, it is statistically insignificant. If the archer is shooting at the target, it is indistinguishable from blind archery.


    Edited for conciseness.

  60. 60
    Mung says:

    Zachriel doesn’t get it.

    That implies that, if there is the occasional targeting, it is statistically insignificant. If the archer is shooting at the target, it is indistinguishable from blind archery.

    You’re still looking at things as if fitness is the only target.

  61. 61
    ellazimm says:

    Mung #57

    ok, but how will looking at mutations rates tell me that evolution is unguided?

    Random means no pattern. If they were directed you’d expect to see a pattern, some indication that they were focused on a particular target.

    In other words . . . why would a ‘designer’ guide mutations in such a way as to look random by all mathematical measures?

  62. 62
    Zachriel says:

    Mung: You’re still looking at things as if fitness is the only target.

    The rates of mutations vary across the genome, but are still otherwise statistically random. If you insist mutations are not random, then perhaps you can provide some evidence of this.

  63. 63
    Indiana Effigy says:

    Mung: “You’re still looking at things as if fitness is the only target.”

    Fitness isn’t a target, it is just an outcome. A mutation may increase fitness, reduce fitness, or more likely, have no impact on fitness.

  64. 64
    Mung says:

    Fitness isn’t a target, it is just an outcome.

    Yes, I know. But I am having a heck of a time trying to convince Zachriel.

  65. 65
    Zachriel says:

    Mung: But I am having a heck of a time trying to convince Zachriel.

    It’s not a target, but a reproductive advantage due to heritable traits. That doesn’t mean we can’t identify traits that provide greater fitness, and show the movement of a population towards expression of that trait.

    You suggested @60 that there was another target besides fitness, but didn’t say what that target might be.

  66. 66
    Mung says:

    The claim is that we know that mutations are random with respect to fitness and that from this we can conclude that evolution is unguided. The argument is a non-sequitur.

    It also assumes that the only thing that matters in evolution is current fitness.

  67. 67
    Mung says:

    ellazim:

    Random means no pattern. If they were directed you’d expect to see a pattern, some indication that they were focused on a particular target.

    In other words . . . why would a ‘designer’ guide mutations in such a way as to look random by all mathematical measures?

    Random mutation, in evolutionary theory, means random with respect to fitness. Do you dispute this?

    You are expanding the meaning of random beyond what they theory states and are thus either equivocating or drawing an inference not allowed by the theory.

  68. 68
    Zachriel says:

    Mung: Random mutation, in evolutionary theory, means random with respect to fitness. Do you dispute this?

    Mutations are random with respect to fitness. They are not random with respect to site on the genome. However, otherwise, they form a random distribution as far as anyone can determine.

    Mung: The claim is that we know that mutations are random with respect to fitness and that from this we can conclude that evolution is unguided.

    It’s hard to tell with ID, claims often being so vague, but some IDers apparently believe that evolution occurs, but is guided towards adaptive forms. So, mutations being random with respect to adaptation is evidence against this position.

  69. 69
    ellazimm says:

    Mung

    Random mutation, in evolutionary theory, means random with respect to fitness. Do you dispute this?

    I’ve said as much myself earlier in the thread. So, no.

    You are expanding the meaning of random beyond what they theory states and are thus either equivocating or drawing an inference not allowed by the theory.

    No. I’m not. There is no pattern in the temporal distribution of mutations at given positions with respect to fitness. Do you like that better?

    If there is no pattern then there is no evidence for mutations being guided. By Ockham’s Razor you shouldn’t assume they are guided.

    I get the feeling that you argue about these things just to argue. After all these years you still don’t seem to understand the evolutionary argument. Or you think it’s funny to have people explain it to you over and over again.

  70. 70
    GaryGaulin says:

    In this cross-topic thought that started as a reply to Cornelius I had to mention what Larry said:

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-601489

    I wanted to say something for this thread but in my case it becomes at least that length to express my reasons for loving Larry even though he says “IDiots” in a way that includes me too I guess.

    Science requires large amounts of humility. The only thing for sure is a great scientific theory will have a weird story behind it. We at least got that part right.

  71. 71
    Mung says:

    ellazimm: If there is no pattern then there is no evidence for mutations being guided.

    If there is no pattern with respect to current fitness, it does not follow that there is no pattern, period. You have only considered one possible pattern. Does that exhaust all the possibilities?

    Have you seen anyone put forth a logical argument for evolution being unguided yet that was not a non-sequitur, because I haven’t?

  72. 72
    ellazimm says:

    Mung #71

    If there is no pattern with respect to current fitness, it does not follow that there is no pattern, period. You have only considered one possible pattern. Does that exhaust all the possibilities?

    With the exception of some regions having slightly higher or lower mutation rates I don’t know of any pattern OF ANY KIND. If you want to look for one be my guest. Until the evidence is found there is no pattern with regard to fitness.

    Have you seen anyone put forth a logical argument for evolution being unguided yet that was not a non-sequitur, because I haven’t?

    Yes, I have. And it’s easy to find examples. Which I’m sure you’ve seen and clearly rejected. So I won’t waste my time giving you links or references.

    In fact, in my experience, very few people on the ID side on this forum ever change their mind or alter their views. Makes you wonder what the blog is for.

  73. 73
    Mung says:

    ellazimm: Until the evidence is found there is no pattern with regard to fitness.

    How many times do I have to say this? I am not talking about patterns with respect to current fitness. Please let that sink in.

    Now you admit to not being aware of any pattern of any kind. Do you think your ignorance ought to serve as a premise in the argument?

    You are not aware of any pattern, therefore no pattern exists. You are not aware of any pattern, therefore evolution is unguided. How does that help your argument that evolution is unguided?

    Here’s your latest:

    Very few people on the ID side on this forum ever change their mind or alter their view, so I won’t bother trying to support my claim with a logical argument.

    I’m sure there are logical arguments out there, but I am also sure Mung has already seen and rejected them, therefore I won’t waste my time trying to find an example.

    By the way, is this an admission that your own argument was indeed a non-sequitur?

    Perhaps that is why people on the ID side don’t change their mind. They have been given no reason to do so.

  74. 74
    Zachriel says:

    Mung: You are not aware of any pattern, therefore no pattern exists.

    The pattern is statistical randomness. If you have a way to detect a pattern in mutations, then please be specific.

  75. 75
    ellazimm says:

    Mung #73

    How many times do I have to say this? I am not talking about patterns with respect to current fitness. Please let that sink in.

    If you know of any pattern (except that already mentioned) please elaborate.

    Now you admit to not being aware of any pattern of any kind. Do you think your ignorance ought to serve as a premise in the argument?

    Science is provisional always. So, if you have evidence of a pattern please elaborate.

    You are not aware of any pattern, therefore no pattern exists. You are not aware of any pattern, therefore evolution is unguided. How does that help your argument that evolution is unguided?

    When I see a pattern I’ll change my mind. Can you present a pattern?

    By the way, is this an admission that your own argument was indeed a non-sequitur?

    Nope. But I’ve seen you and your court jester routine for a number of years now and I know how you behave. I predict that you will not be able to provide a pattern in mutations because while you’re long at making fun you’re usually pretty short on technical details.

    Perhaps that is why people on the ID side don’t change their mind. They have been given no reason to do so.

    I change my mind when new data comes to light. So, if you have a pattern in mutations to present let’s see it.

Leave a Reply