Intelligent Design

The Evolution of Venomous Proteins

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Imagine a Star Trek movie in which two strikingly similar planets are discovered. The planets are in different corners of the universe, yet their coastlines, mountain ranges, inhabitants and cultures are amazingly alike. Or again, imagine a new, yet fully-formed, planet is discovered. The planet was not there a few years earlier, but there it is, complete with inhabitants and civilizations. These two phenomena–convergence and rapid appearance–are common in biology and, needless to say, they contradict evolutionary expectations. These surprises are not often seriously reckoned with. Evolutionists do not engage the implications of these findings, and sometimes they even avoid or deny the findings altogether.  Read more

17 Replies to “The Evolution of Venomous Proteins

  1. 1
    scordova says:

    And so, not surprisingly, in this study the evolutionists use a plethora of teleological language in their peer reviewed paper. The reader is told, for example, that the study “confirms that convergent protein recruitment” spans all major animal phyla. We also learn that “the proteins chosen” in the evolutionary process are from widely dispersed protein families. Such literary devices are ubiquitous in the evolution genre and crucial to maintaining a credible narrative.

    “Proof” via ciruclar reasoning. In every other scientific discipline, such a line of thinking would be rejected. In evoluionary literature, it’s par of the course, and accounts for a very very substantial part of the way evolution is proven.

    They can offer it as a speculation, but that’s as far as it goes.

    Merely because something is useful does not mean it will be evolved. Merely because a trait might be selected for after it exists, doesn’t mean that it was selected for (either it or its precursors) before it exists. Georges St. Mivart was the first in a line of many fine thinkers to realize this. Behe has phrased the problem at the biochemical level.

  2. 2
    Nakashima says:

    Dr Hunter,

    These two phenomena–convergence and rapid appearance–are common in biology and, needless to say, they contradict evolutionary expectations.

    Please cite an evolutionary textbook that includes a sentence which ends “therefore we do not expect convergence of phenotypes to occur.”

    Rapid appearance = high selection pressure.

  3. 3
    Collin says:

    Rapid appearance does not equal high selection pressure. Rapid appearance may occur under circumstances with high selection pressure but high selection pressure does not necessarily cause the rapid appearance. Or it is only one cause, like high health care costs “causes” Obamacare. There is, (supposedly) intelligence also involved.

  4. 4
    PaV says:

    Nakashima [2]:

    Rapid appearance = high selection pressure.

    Recently, a lizard species was transplanted from one Adriatic island to another, and within 35 years had changed its phenotype dramatically, including its diet, behavior, and the addition of cecal valves. All in 35 years!

    This happened on an island upon which there was NO competition–it was the only lizard species of its kind.

    Would you like to explain that, please?

  5. 5
    hrun0815 says:

    Re #4: Have you actually read the paper that describes this phenomenon?

  6. 6
    Cornelius Hunter says:

    hrun:

    Re #4: Have you actually read the paper that describes this phenomenon?

    Yes, and it isn’t selection. As in so many cases, it is an adaptation to an environmental shift. A good example of how resistant evolution is to scientific observations.

  7. 7
    PaV says:

    hrun0815 [5]:

    The paper was discussed here right after it came out. I’m rather sure that along the way I did read the paper.

    I don’t see how this any pertinence, however.

  8. 8
    Nakashima says:

    Mr PaV,

    This happened on an island upon which there was NO competition–it was the only lizard species of its kind.

    Competition from another species isn’t the only form of selection pressure. A sudden change in availability of food sources is a source of selection pressure, the population has to adapt or starve.

  9. 9
    Nakashima says:

    Dr Hunter,

    As in so many cases, it is an adaptation to an environmental shift.

    So you are predicting that there has been no change in allele frequencies, compared to the population on the island they came from 35 years ago?

  10. 10
    hrun0815 says:

    Re #6: Did anybody claim that this is evolution? If so, what was their evidence?

  11. 11
    hrun0815 says:

    Re #7: You asked about an explanation. I would assume there is some form of explanation in the paper, isn’t there? If so, what is it and why is it wrong?

  12. 12
    Mung says:

    Are we all in agreement that there was no evolution here?

    If so, can we move on to the next “no evolution here move on” case?

  13. 13
    Mung says:

    Please stop using teleological language to express supposedly non-teleological processes. Thanks!

  14. 14
    bornagain77 says:

    of interest off topic:

    Bacterial Flagellum Can Tune Its Swim Speed with Network-Controlled Brakes
    Excerpt: The authors, hailing from Switzerland and Germany, said: “These experiments demonstrate that bacteria can modulate flagellar motor output and thus swimming velocity in response to environmental cues.” Noting that “E. coli directs its movement in an aqueous environment via phosphorylation-mediated control of motor reversals.” That led them to ask, “Why would bacterial cells, in addition to this sophisticated motor control, modulate their swimming speed?”
    http://www.creationsafaris.com.....#20100320a

  15. 15
    hrun0815 says:

    Are we all in agreement that there was no evolution here?

    No.

    Please stop using teleological language to express supposedly non-teleological processes.

    And, no.

  16. 16
    uoflcard says:

    #10 hrun:

    Re #6: Did anybody claim that this is evolution? If so, what was their evidence?

    Uh, yes. How about St. PZ Myers and his hoard of worshipers on Pharyngula:

    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyn.....lizard.php

    Myers cannot contain himself by claiming the undeniable proof of Darwinian evolution that this provides. He uses the word “novel” about a dozen times. It is followed by hundreds of hundreds of posts which basically read “OMG UNDENIABLE! CREATIONISTS DEFEATED (AGAIN!)!”. It isn’t until the 300-post range that a supporter begins to question that maybe cecal valves and other novel traits didn’t accidentally arise and then be naturally selected until they were fixed in a mere 30 years. I posted in the thread the same objections, but I cannot find my posts now.

    There are countless other militant blogs that claimed the same day of reckoning:

    http://greensboring.com/viewto.....038;t=8045

    http://greensboring.com/viewto.....038;t=8045

  17. 17
    uoflcard says:

    #15 hrun

    Are we all in agreement that there was no evolution here?

    No.

    I agree to disagree with the proposal that there was no evolution. There clearly was (assuming we’re talking about the lizards). Can we all agree that it was not mutation+selection evolution (as was triumphantly claimed by many a militant blogger)? I could make a more convincing case for a young Earth.

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