News Origin Of Life

Life arose from chemical imbalances?

Spread the love

From ScienceDaily:

The water world theory from Russell and his team says that the warm, alkaline hydrothermal vents maintained an unbalanced state with respect to the surrounding ancient, acidic ocean — one that could have provided so-called free energy to drive the emergence of life. In fact, the vents could have created two chemical imbalances. The first was a proton gradient, where protons — which are hydrogen ions — were concentrated more on the outside of the vent’s chimneys, also called mineral membranes. The proton gradient could have been tapped for energy — something our own bodies do all the time in cellular structures called mitochondria.

The second imbalance could have involved an electrical gradient between the hydrothermal fluids and the ocean. Billions of years ago, when Earth was young, its oceans were rich with carbon dioxide. When the carbon dioxide from the ocean and fuels from the vent — hydrogen and methane — met across the chimney wall, electrons may have been transferred. These reactions could have produced more complex carbon-containing, or organic compounds — essential ingredients of life as we know it. Like proton gradients, electron transfer processes occur regularly in mitochondria.

“Within these vents, we have a geological system that already does one aspect of what life does,” said Laurie Barge, second author of the study at JPL. “Life lives off proton gradients and the transfer of electrons.”

As is the case with all advanced life forms, enzymes are the key to making chemical reactions happen. In our ancient oceans, minerals may have acted like enzymes, interacting with chemicals swimming around and driving reactions. In the water world theory, two different types of mineral “engines” might have lined the walls of the chimney structures. More.

So the exact right genetic codes and protein machines to read, repair, and copy them and carry out all the activities for life can be explained by “minerals may have acted like enzymes, interacting with chemicals swimming around and driving reactions.” And life is not now popping up everywhere because…?

Acceptance of free-floating speculation for decades on end as “science” for no other reason than that it is naturalist is harmful to the concept of science—unless what we mean by science is “whatever promotes naturalism.” Why, one wonders, do proponents of naturalist atheism not become nervous about the use of this sort of silliness to promote their beliefs? Readers?

See also: The Science Fictions series at your fingertips (origin of life)

Follow UD News at Twitter!

105 Replies to “Life arose from chemical imbalances?

  1. 1
    mahuna says:

    And so these magic reactions have been occurring uninterrupted for the last 500 million years and that’s why there are so many distinct multi-celled animals whose DNA bears no relation to any other multi-celled animal on Earth (since each of the clumps that “came alive” would naturally have different internals).

    I could accept the basic claim if it were clear that the process continues to happen. But a theory that claims that there was ONCE an electrochemical process that operated under a VERY narrow range of conditions and then STOPPED working for EVER, well, THAT is Magic. Or what anthropologists call a “creation myth”.

  2. 2
    Upright BiPed says:

    …the new report assembles decades of field, laboratory and theoretical research into a grand, unified picture.

    Sorry. This theory is either sort of an embarrassment, or a full on embarrassment. Pake your tick.

  3. 3
    johnp says:

    A quick perusal of the article highlighted numerous examples of handwaving… “may have” “possible places” “may have” “could have” “could have” “could have” “could have” “could have” “may have” “might have” “may be” “is thought to have” “is thought to have” “may in fact be” “may explain” “might have arisen”

    The last paragraph tells a more complete story than the rest of the article- “For now, the ultimate question of whether the alkaline hydrothermal vents are the hatcheries of life remains unanswered. Russell says the necessary experiments are jaw-droppingly difficult to design and carry out…”

    Get back to me after you run those experiments, Mr. Russell, and have more to talk about other than maybe mighta coulda just possibly.

  4. 4
    Mung says:

    What started out as simple cells ultimately transformed into slime molds, frogs, elephants, humans and the rest of our planet’s living kingdoms.

    No such thing as a “simple” cell.

    “Life takes advantage of unbalanced states on the planet, which may have been the case billions of years ago at the alkaline hydrothermal vents,” said Russell. “Life is the process that resolves these disequilibria.”

    ok. how does that translate into these disequilibria created life?

    The proton gradient could have been tapped for energy — something our own bodies do all the time in cellular structures called mitochondria.

    Could have been tapped for energy by what? The life that did not yet exist?

    “Within these vents, we have a geological system that already does one aspect of what life does,” said Laurie Barge, second author of the study at JPL. “Life lives off proton gradients and the transfer of electrons.”

    This is just confused. These gradients do not do what life does. There are all sorts of gradients out there. Gravity for example often provides a gradient that humans make use of, such as with a waterwheel or hydroelectric dam. Oh look, gravity is almost human! It does what humans do. Poppycock!

    Don’t be misinformed by your leaders Larry!

    “These mineral engines may be compared to what’s in modern cars,” said Russell.

    “They make life ‘go’ like the car engines by consuming fuel and expelling exhaust.

    lol. Now he claims that a source of potential energy is analogous to an automobile engine. The fuel doesn’t make cars go and gradients do not make life ‘go’. Life makes itself go.

  5. 5
    Mung says:

    I can only hope that these are Canadian researchers.

    😉

  6. 6
    Mung says:

    I will say that I read the article to see what it said about cell membranes and how they might have arisen in the indicated environment. Not even touched on by the science daily article. I suggest they be renamed Scientism Daily.

    However:

    The realization, now 50 years old, that membrane-spanning gradients, rather than organic intermediates, play a vital role in life’s operations calls into question the idea of “prebiotic chemistry.” It informs our own suggestion that experimentation should look to the kind of nanoengines that must have been the precursors to molecular motors—such as pyrophosphate synthetase and the like driven by these gradients—that make life work. It is these putative free energy or disequilibria converters, presumably constructed from minerals comprising the earliest inorganic membranes, that, as obstacles to vectorial ionic flows, present themselves as the candidates for future experiments.

    here

    Got to love the use of presumably. And notice the reference to nanoengines here hardly follows the analogy offered in the SD article.

  7. 7
    Mung says:

    So I decided to pull out my volume of Protocells: Bridging Nonliving and Living Matter to see what t had to say about biological membranes and hydrothermal vents.

    That will have to wait for a future post, as this was simply too good to pass up.

    In autocatalysis by a biosynthetic network, we see the simplest form of reproduction. When multiple such networks couple to common, limited sources of atomic species and energy, differences in autocatalytic efficiency result in competitive exclusion. Darwinian reproduction and selection are not so much novel concepts, as recapitulations of these simple chemical processes in the more complex context in which heritable variations are not contained in the basic chemical substrate become possible.

    – p. 446

    … heritable variations are not contained in the basic chemical substrate…

    Emphasis in the original.

  8. 8
    Mung says:

    And here’s that future post.

    Protocells: Bridging Nonliving and Living Matter is a tome of 28 chapters and 653+ pages. Based upon entries in the Index for Hydrothermal vents, there is only a single chapter (Chapter 20: Core Metabolism as a Self-Organized System) that deals with the subject at any length. Conspicuously absent from that chapter is any mention of how biological membranes could have arisen in such an environment.

    I cant’ claim to be at all surprised at the finding.

    Little is gained by showing that biologically relevant molecules can be formed under geochemically irrelevant conditions.

    – p. 453

    Indeed.

    ok, perhaps there was an oblique reference to biomembranes, you decide:

    robust protocells must be capable of self-repair. The wide array of mechanisms for repair of damaged DNA, chaperoning of protein folding, repair or degradation of macromolecules damaged by free radicals, and pumping of ions and other species to maintain the internal cell state, attests that cells must correct constantly for random events …

    But no explanation for their origin.

  9. 9
    Mung says:

    From the same book and chapter:

    Examining the metabolic pathways of extant organisms reveals the existence of a common core of metabolic processes consisting of the TCA cycle and synthetic pathways for construction of simple amino acids, ribose, purines, and pyrimidines. These would have been the basic requirements for a primitive organism that needed to synthesize the building blocks of macromolecules from small organic compounds available in the environment.

    Right. And what drove the need to synthesize these “building blocks”? They were needed, therefore they were synthesized? Really?

    How did this happen given the barrier of a membrane?

    This has always been one of those things that has puzzled me. Having never taken a course in biochemistry perhaps what is a mystery to me is quite clear to others.

    DNA and RNA are macromolecules, correct?

    Those macromolecules consist of building blocks such as ribose, purines, and pyrimidines, correct?

    Yet, apparently, those building blocks must be synthesized.

    Synthesized by what, and how? Synthesized by proteins which require DNA and RNA which require the building blocks which require proteins?

    How did this happen given the barrier of a membrane?

  10. 10
    ScuzzaMan says:

    Vox Day chose Easter sunday to publish the personal testimony of John C Wright, noted science fiction author.

    I recommend it all, but especially this bit:

    Third, a friend of mine asked me what evidence, if any, would be sufficient to convince me that the supernatural existed. This question stumped me. My philosophy at the time excluded the contemplation of the supernatural axiomatically: by definition (my definition) even the word “super-natural” was a contradiction in terms. Logic then said that, if my conclusions were definitional, they were circular. I was assuming the conclusion of the subject matter in dispute.

    Now, my philosophy at the time was as rigorous and exact as 35 years of study could make it (I started philosophy when I was seven). This meant there was no point for reasonable doubt in the foundational structure of my axioms, definitions, and common notions. This meant that, logically, even if God existed, and manifested Himself to me, my philosophy would force me to reject the evidence of my senses, and dismiss any manifestations as a coincidence, hallucination, or dream. Under this hypothetical, my philosophy would force me to an exactly wrong conclusion due to structural errors of assumption.

    A philosopher (and I mean a serious and manly philosopher, not a sophomoric boy) does not use philosophy to flinch away from truth or hide from it. A philosophy composed of structural false-to-facts assumptions is insupportable.

    A philosopher goes where the truth leads, and has no patience with mere emotion.

    http://voxday.blogspot.de/2014.....right.html

    Usual caveats apply: I am not endorsing either John C Wight, Vox Day, or any of their beliefs; just sharing a nice piece of writing that happens to speak to the fundamental problem in materialist thinking.

  11. 11
    Eric Anderson says:

    Mung @8 and 9:

    Good finds and great questions. This, in particular, represents another huge challenge to the materialist creation story:

    robust protocells must be capable of self-repair. The wide array of mechanisms for repair of damaged DNA, chaperoning of protein folding, repair or degradation of macromolecules damaged by free radicals, and pumping of ions and other species to maintain the internal cell state, attests that cells must correct constantly for random events …

    Typically, we tend to just gloss over this need. Surely, after all, if something is functioning it will just keep on functioning, right? Another naive assumption that perhaps needs to hit the dust bin.

    —–

    And, by the way, why do people keep talking about protocells? If all they are referring to is the “first cells” or “early cells” on Earth, then that would seem to be the best way to describe them. No. By using the prefix “proto” they imply (if not being forthcoming enough to explicitly state) that something less than a real cell is all that was needed to get the magic of the creation story underway. Something — conveniently — more vague and subject to the whims of imagination.

    Yet what we see in reality, at every turn, is that essentially everything we find today in our simplest cells is necessary: a complex membrane, information-rich molecules, translation mechanisms, control mechanisms, repair mechanisms, and so on. We can certainly contemplate what the earliest cell may have looked like — it is a useful endeavor — but what is becoming increasingly clear is that it must have been substantially similar — at least in processes and functions, and coordinated complexity — to what we see in the simplest cells today.

    Using the prefix “proto” doesn’t add any useful information in our quest to understand early life; rather it typically obscures, giving us the impression that we are talking about a real entity, something that really existed, something that — in vague and unspecified ways amenable to the materialist imagination — helped bridge the gap from chemicals to “real” cells.

  12. 12
    gpuccio says:

    Mung, Eric:

    The best thing that I can say about those bizarre attempts at proposing what cannot be true, a metabolism first approach to OOL, is that they have understood well the problem, but they don’t want to give the only possible answer.

    It is perfectly true that the energy problem is the first problem, together with the demarcation problem, which is an essential part of the energy problem.

    Living being are true paradoxes: they violate the essence of the second law without apparently violating its detail. To do that, you need a lot of available energy and a lot of available information to manage that energy. And you need intelligent demarcation between the utterly unlikely environment where all that is realized, and the rest of the world.

    Protein first, DNA first, RNA first and any mixture of that is only a big failure from the start. What you need is energy and information.

    The only credible scenario for OOL remains: energy first + information first + demarcation first + RNA first + DNA first + proteins first + something else that we still don’t understand first. It’s usually called a prokaryote.

  13. 13
    SteRusJon says:

    gpuccio hit the nail squarely on its head with a 10 pound sledge by stating

    The only credible scenario for OOL remains: energy first + information first + demarcation first + RNA first + DNA first + proteins first + something else that we still don’t understand first. It’s usually called a prokaryote.

    I propose the “something else” is the forcing of the assembled system from the state of static equilibrium called “dead” to the state of dynamic equilibrium called “alive”.

    Now, repeat after me. “SPECIAL CREATION!”

    Stephen

  14. 14
    SteRusJon says:

    My shiny new lawn mower sits in my carport, inert, “dead”. It has every physical component it needs to be an efficient grass mulching machine. Yet, until I pull the starting cord, hell will freeze over before it clips even one blade of grass. By pulling the cord, I can transform it from a marvelous assemblage of precision components in a “dead” static state to a “living” dynamic state in which it will stay as long as the fuel doesn’t run out or the carburetor doesn’t plug up or the air filter doesn’t clog or the spark plug doesn’t foul or the valves don’t stick or the gasoline isn’t poisoned with water or … or … or … and causes the mower to “die”.

    The presence of all the parts for a living organism doesn’t automatically make it alive. That is a necessary condition but not a sufficient condition. Someone needs to “pull the cord” to start it up. Thereafter, it will remain alive as long as all its components continue to perform well enough to maintain it in the state of dynamic equilibrium.

    Stephen

  15. 15
    Moose Dr says:

    The “life arose from chemical imbalances” postion is obviously true. After all, the chemical imbalances continue to this day. How else would psychiatry survive? We must therefore conclude that mental illness is a vestigial effect left over from our primordial ancestors.

  16. 16
    Axel says:

    It’s the flash of lightning what does it.

  17. 17
    AVS says:

    Mungy, the first cells were most certainly simple. Abiogenesis predicts this and is based on this.
    Only you are confused by the geological system/today’s cells comparison of the use of ion gradients. And your gravity analogy is completely ridiculous. The hydrothermal vent systems resemble systems in use by cells, the force of gravity can be used to do work only with the input of intelligent thought.
    “gradients do not make life go” …says the guy with a high school-level understanding of biology.
    How are the engines references different in the science daily article and the paper? …they’re not.
    Do you even know what that quote from page 446 means? Something tells me you don’t. Go ahead and summarize it, prove me wrong.
    You mean the chapter about metabolism doesn’t talk about how membranes form? I never would’ve guessed… Maybe they already spent a large amount of time talking about this? Maybe somewhere in the first 20 chapters? Just a thought.
    The “need” to synthesize these molecules is based on what we see today in life. They didn’t “need” to synthesize the specific molecules we think of as essential to life today, they “needed” only to evolve in their molecular make-up and functions. I’m pretty sure you took that quote out of context.
    The membrane is not a perfect barrier, and we can hypothesize that early membranes were even less of an efficient barrier to small molecule movement.
    Your arguments about early cells and their “requirements” of all the major molecules we see today demonstrates you do not know w demonstrates you do not know what you are talking about.
    EA, I’m not really sure what your problem is with the word, “protocells.” It simply means “the first” cells, or “early” cells. Basically it helps get the point across that these cells are nothing like the ones we see today. Apparently it doesn’t really help if the reader has no knowledge in biology (cough, cough).

  18. 18
    bornagain77 says:

    AVS you claim

    the first cells were most certainly simple.

    And you know this how AVS? Even this ‘evolution friendly’ article readily admits the staggering level of ‘specified complexity’ (information) that would have to be dealt with in the first cell:

    Was our oldest ancestor a proton-powered rock? – Oct. 2009
    Excerpt: “There is no doubt that the progenitor of all life on Earth, the common ancestor, possessed DNA, RNA and proteins, a universal genetic code, ribosomes (the protein-building factories), ATP and a proton-powered enzyme for making ATP. The detailed mechanisms for reading off DNA and converting genes into proteins were also in place. In short, then, the last common ancestor of all life looks pretty much like a modern cell.”
    http://www.newscientist.com/ar.....-rock.html

    Moreover, we now have evidence for photosynthetic life suddenly appearing on earth, as soon as water appeared on the earth, in the oldest sedimentary rocks ever found on earth.

    The Sudden Appearance Of Life On Earth – video
    https://vimeo.com/92413648

    When Did Life on Earth Begin? Ask a Rock (3.85 bya)
    http://www.astrobio.net/exclusive/293/

    When did oxygenic photosynthesis evolve? – Roger Buick – 2008
    Excerpt:,, U–Pb data from ca 3.8?Ga metasediments suggest that this metabolism could have arisen by the start of the geological record. Hence, the hypothesis that oxygenic photosynthesis evolved well before the atmosphere became permanently oxygenated seems well supported.
    http://rstb.royalsocietypublis...../2731.long

    Moreover, there is no evidence of prebiotic chemistry before this time:

    Dr. Hugh Ross – Origin Of Life Paradox (No prebiotic chemical signatures)- video (40:10 minute mark)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=UPvO2EkiLls#t=2410

    “We get that evidence from looking at carbon 12 to carbon 13 analysis. And it tells us that in Earth’s oldest (sedimentary) rock, which dates at 3.80 billion years ago, we find an abundance for the carbon signature of living systems. Namely, that life prefers carbon 12. And so if you see a higher ratio of carbon 12 to carbon 13 that means that carbon has been processed by life. And it is that kind of evidence that tells us that life has been abundant on earth as far back as 3.80 billion years ago (when water was first present on earth).,,, And that same carbon 12 to carbon 13 analysis tells us that planet earth, over it entire 4.5662 billion year history has never had prebiotics. Prebiotics would have a higher ratio of carbon 13 to carbon 12. All the carbonaceous material, we see in the entire geological record of the earth, has the signature of being post-biotic not pre-biotic. Which means planet earth never had a primordial soup. And the origin of life on earth took place in a geological instant” (as soon as it was possible for life to exist on earth).
    – Hugh Ross – quote as stated in preceding video – italics are added

    Isotopic Evidence For Life Immediately Following Late Bombardment – Graph
    http://cdn.physorg.com/newman/.....bitofc.jpg

    And photosynthetic life is anything but ‘simple life’:

    Scientists unlock some key secrets of photosynthesis – July 2, 2012
    Excerpt: “The photosynthetic system of plants is nature’s most elaborate nanoscale biological machine,” said Lakshmi. “It converts light energy at unrivaled efficiency of more than 95 percent compared to 10 to 15 percent in the current man-made solar technologies.,, “Photosystem II is the engine of life,” Lakshmi said. “It performs one of the most energetically demanding reactions known to mankind, splitting water, with remarkable ease and efficiency.”,,, “Water is a very stable molecule and it takes four photons of light to split water,” she said. “This is a challenge for chemists and physicists around the world (to imitate) as the four-photon reaction has very stringent requirements.”
    http://phys.org/news/2012-07-s.....hesis.html

    Even the parasitic mycoplasma is complex beyond belief:

    Three Subsets of Sequence Complexity and Their Relevance to Biopolymeric Information – David L. Abel and Jack T. Trevors – Theoretical Biology & Medical Modelling, Vol. 2, 11 August 2005, page 8
    “No man-made program comes close to the technical brilliance of even Mycoplasmal genetic algorithms. Mycoplasmas are the simplest known organism with the smallest known genome, to date. How was its genome and other living organisms’ genomes programmed?”
    http://www.biomedcentral.com/c.....2-2-29.pdf

    To Model the Simplest Microbe in the World, You Need 128 Computers – July 2012
    Excerpt: Mycoplasma genitalium has one of the smallest genomes of any free-living organism in the world, clocking in at a mere 525 genes. That’s a fraction of the size of even another bacterium like E. coli, which has 4,288 genes.,,,
    The bioengineers, led by Stanford’s Markus Covert, succeeded in modeling the bacterium, and published their work last week in the journal Cell. What’s fascinating is how much horsepower they needed to partially simulate this simple organism. It took a cluster of 128 computers running for 9 to 10 hours to actually generate the data on the 25 categories of molecules that are involved in the cell’s lifecycle processes.,,,
    ,,the depth and breadth of cellular complexity has turned out to be nearly unbelievable, and difficult to manage, even given Moore’s Law. The M. genitalium model required 28 subsystems to be individually modeled and integrated, and many critics of the work have been complaining on Twitter that’s only a fraction of what will eventually be required to consider the simulation realistic.,,,
    http://www.theatlantic.com/tec.....rs/260198/

    Thus AVS, other than your atheistic/materialistic belief, why fo you imagine that “the first cells were most certainly simple”? You simply have no evidence for that claim!

  19. 19
    AVS says:

    Are you kidding me BA? Haven’t you learned yet? Half of your posts have nothing to do with the first cells. And the very first cells to come about were most certainly simple. Very simple in fact, when compared to today’s cells. The fact that I have to explain this to you demonstrates your complete lack of understanding on the topic. The first cells had only the most basic properties of cells that we see today. It would be completely illogical to think that the first cells to arise had anything but the smallest fraction of complexity that we see in cells today? Are you really this moronic?
    You cannot think in terms of today’s cells when trying to think of the first cells to arise. They are vastly different. Thinking about the first cells requires extensive knowledge in biology, chemistry, and other fields.
    Knowledge you and your friends lack completely.

  20. 20
    bornagain77 says:

    AVS, I don’t know why I bother with your juvenile antics, but, in case you don’t know, ad hominem is not scientific evidence.,,, nor is your imagination scientific evidence. Whereas, I’ve given you concrete scientific evidence that ‘complex’ photosynthetic life appeared on earth as soon as it was possible for it to exist on earth. So where is your evidence that ‘simple’ life preceded that? You don’t even have scientific evidence of prebiotic chemistry!,,,

  21. 21
    AVS says:

    You’ve given me “concrete” evidence that life appeared on Earth as soon as it was possible? BA, I don’t know what planet you live on, but a shoddy youtube video of someone making claims with little to no scientific evidence is no “concrete evidence” of anything but how much of a joke you guys are.
    I don’t think you even understand what half of your copy/paste jobs are saying. They are all either pseudoscience BS or unrelated to the conversation. Typical BA post, I guess.

  22. 22
    gpuccio says:

    AVS:

    Mungy, the first cells were most certainly simple. Abiogenesis predicts this and is based on this.

    (Emphasis mine).

    This statement is as good as it can be. A theory which is based on a specific assumption and, guess what, predicts it, is really a treat for the scientific mind!

    Thank you, AVS. You are the best. 🙂

  23. 23
    gpuccio says:

    Mung, BA and others:

    I think that there is no real fun in debating OOL theories. It’s so easy to win!

    That’s why I usually prefer macroevolution. The game is more entertaining there.

    I think that even those who propose this bizarre theories don’t really believe in what they are proposing. The idea is probably that someone must go on proposing something, so that people may at least believe that one day, perhaps, someone else will come out with something even remotely credible.

  24. 24
    Joe says:

    AVS,

    Too bad for you there isn’t any evidence that the first cells were more than today’s most simple cells. AVS is just a wishful thinking dolt.

  25. 25
    AVS says:

    Poochy, I’m not really sure why you are so riled up over the fact that abiogenesis predicts and is based on formation of simple cells first. Assuming anything else would be completely illogical. Most hypotheses in abiogenesis require the formation of slightly more and more complex molecules, which formed the first cells. These first cells were of the most simple nature in comparison to today’s cells. There simply has to be early steps in abiogenesis where the cells are of an extremely simple nature. I’m not aware of any possible scenario where the first cells to arise were even close to today’s cells in complexity. Oh wait, unless you count the idea that somebody “poofed” the first cells into existence along with all the complexity we see today. Sound familiar to anyone?

  26. 26
    AVS says:

    Joe, I don’t think the first cells were “more than today’s most simple cells.” You really do not understand the topic of abiogenesis do you?

    Of course not, you have the intelligence of a five year-old.

  27. 27
    Joe says:

    AVS:

    Joe, I don’t think the first cells were “more than today’s most simple cells.”

    My bad- I meant to say – Too bad for you there isn’t any evidence that the first cells were more simple than today’s most simple cells.

    Deal with that, loser

  28. 28
    Axel says:

    AVS, your failure to intuitively understand the wholly antithetical natures of mind and matter, and, necessarily the precedence of mind over matter, as also meticulously evidenced by quantum physics, means that it is you who have an inaptly-limited, worldly intelligence.

    No shame in that, but it might be a good idea for you to look into other areas for your diversion: computer gaming, perhaps, or rapping, or some kind of involvement in modern pop music.

  29. 29
    Joe says:

    AVS:

    These first cells were of the most simple nature in comparison to today’s cells.

    That is the propaganda. Too bad there isn’t any evidence for such a thing.

    However gullible children buy it-> enter AVS.

  30. 30
    AVS says:

    It’s ok Joe, but maybe you should think about reading your comments before you hit that “post” button. Who knows, maybe you’ll realize how childish and unintelligent you sound.

    Axel, I’m not really sure what you are blabbering about with your mind over matter BS. You’re one step away from becoming the next BA when you bring up quantum physics like that.

    You guys don’t know jack about biology. Why do I bother trying to talk to you guys about it?

  31. 31
    gpuccio says:

    AVS:

    If you cannot understand, even when it is pointed to you, that a theory which is based on some assumption cannot “predict” the thing on which it is based, then your epistemology is beyond hope.

  32. 32
    AVS says:

    Poochy, you have them in the wrong order, abiogenesis predicts the first cells were simple, and it works based on this assumption.
    Maybe “predict” wasn’t the right word to use, but you are missing the point. It is completely illogical to think that the abiogenesis of the first cell resulted in a complex organism like those seen in nature today. Logic points to the first cells being extremely simple, in the process of abiogenesis. It’s like me and you are looking at the grand canyon, I say that it started off as a shallow river, and you say that’s illogical.
    You’re splitting hairs, buddy.

  33. 33
    gpuccio says:

    AVS:

    “Predict” wasn’t the right word to use. Definitely. You should have used “assume”. Learn to use the correct words, buddy, it will help you in your personal life.

    Empirical science is not based on logic. It is based on observation. And your logic is not necessarily good logic.

    No empirical observation supports the existence of simple cells, of any kind. That’s the simple truth.

    You can build any theory on any assumption, but the value of a theory is that it can:

    a) explain things

    b) predict new things (that were not assumed to build the theory).

    OOL theories can do neither.

    Good luck with your attempts at understanding the basics of science.

  34. 34
    Joe says:

    AVS, we have already proven that we know more about biology than you do.

    Yes we know what abiogenesis predicts. We also know that it is a failed prediction. You have less hope than the kid in a room full of horse-sh!t looking for a horse.

  35. 35
    AVS says:

    “Empirical science is not based on logic”
    Wow. That’s quite a statement. That’s all I really needed to hear from you.
    You’re just being stubborn now, poochy.
    Abiogenesis is a search for the explanation for the origin of life, in case you didn’t get the memo.
    You should try not opening your mouth at all, it will help you in your personal life.

  36. 36
    AVS says:

    Here comes the comic relief… seriously Joe, are you a comedian? Because you are hilarious!
    I’m surprised you can even spell biology.

  37. 37
    johnp says:

    AVS, it would be easy for you to win this argument and shut these guys up.

    All you have to do is show how “slightly more and more complex molecules” formed “first cells of the most simple nature”. Then show how these simple cells evolved into the types of cells we see today.

    For someone of your intelligence, education, and biological savvy, it should be child’s play. These guys won’t know what hit them and they will run home crying to momma. I personally can’t wait to see it happen.

  38. 38
    AVS says:

    Ah yes, here comes another genius telling me that “demonstrating molecular evolution, its formation of the first cells, and their evolution to life as we know it” is simple.
    Don’t worry Johnny, we have many scientists working on it. It is by no means “simple” to do this though.
    Typical UDer, asking for explanations he knows science hasn’t come up with yet and making it seem like it’s “child’s play.”
    I don’t think you guys could demonstrate your scientific illiteracy any better.

  39. 39
    Steve says:

    AVS,

    Is that you Thorton??!!!

    You get booted off Cornelius Hunter’s site for thumpin’ your Darwin Bible way too aggressively. So now you are attempting the same schtick here.

    Don’t worry folks. Thorton’s harmless. Not an original thought from his noodle knot.

    He’s mostly just agitated. Too much sugar.

  40. 40
    Steve says:

    gpuccio,

    When Thorton brings the conversation down to ‘poochy’, you KNOW he’s in meltdown mode.

    You are the enemy gpuccio. The logical, rational, unflappable enemy.

    Dangerous man, dangerous. Hope you got your helmut on and steel tipped boots.

    Cuz Thorton’s lashing out and gnashing of teeth is upon us.

  41. 41
    AVS says:

    Nope, Steve. I don’t know any of those names. Did you really think a few comments were enough to come to that conclusion? I guess the whole “evidence-based conclusions” thing is not a strong-suit of the typical UDer.
    No surprise there.

  42. 42
    johnp says:

    AVS:

    Don’t worry Johnny, we have many scientists working on it. It is by no means “simple” to do this though.

    Alexander Oparin (1924):

    But this ignorance of ours is certainly only temporal. What we do not know today we shall certainly know tomorrow. A whole army of biologists is studying the structure and organization of living matter, while no less number of physicists and chemists are daily revealing to us new properties of dead things. Like two parties of workers boring from the two opposite ends of a tunnel, they are working towards the same goal. The work has already gone a long way and very, very soon the last barriers between the living and the dead will crumble under the attack of patient work and powerful scientific thought.

    Alexander, is that you?

    Your faith in science is commendable. When do you think we may have an answer? Are you, like Oparin was back in the early 1900’s, confident enough in your religion science to claim an answer will be found “very, very soon”? Or, is your faith of a weaker sort?

    As far as “simple”, you have repeatedly stated how “simple” the whole process is, in going from molecules to “simple” cells to more complex cells. If the first cells were so “simple” it should be “simple” to re-create them. How about at the very least a model of one of these so called “simple” cells? Help us simpletons out. What would one of these “simple” cells look like?

  43. 43
    Joe says:

    No AVS, I am not a comedian, however I have corrected you a number of times wrt biology. And that is just a fact supported by many lines of evidence.

    BTW guys, Thorton’s real name is Timothy Horton.

  44. 44
    Barb says:

    Tim Horton? He makes good donuts.

  45. 45
    Joe says:

    Well this Timothy Horton is the donut hole.

  46. 46
    AVS says:

    You’ve corrected me on something, Joe? That’s laughable.
    You don’t know your ass from a hole in the ground.

  47. 47
    AVS says:

    Again with the word twisting Johnny. I never said the process was simple. I said the first cells were incredibly simple, relative to today’s cells.
    I already had this conversation here, maybe a month ago. Feel free to look back at the ool posts to find it.

  48. 48
    Barb says:

    “I already had this conversation here, maybe a month ago.”

    Like a dog returning to its vomit.

  49. 49
    Joe says:

    YOU are laughable, AVS. You are also an ass. And you are definitely simple.

    But anyway you can deny the facts all you want but the evidence demonstrates that, for one, I corrected you with respect to chaperones and protein folding.

  50. 50
    AVS says:

    Oh Barbie, do you have anything intelligent to add to the conversation? Did you ever get that stick out of your rear-end?

    You want to bring this up again Joe? Because I assure you, you did not correct me about anything. You don’t know jack about protein folding and you’ve demonstrated it.

  51. 51
    Eric Anderson says:

    AVS:

    I have already told you what the difficulty is with the term “protocell”.

    Using the prefix “proto” doesn’t add any useful information in our quest to understand early life; rather it typically obscures, giving us the impression that we are talking about a real entity, something that really existed, something that — in vague and unspecified ways amenable to the materialist imagination — helped bridge the gap from chemicals to “real” cells.

    You approach is precisely the same. Claiming, not showing, that there was some early entity that — in thoroughly vague and unspecified ways — helped bridge the gap from chemicals to what we see today.

    A protocell is not a real thing. It is a hypothetical. Hypotheticals themselves aren’t bad, as long as we recognize them as such. But when they are used, as so many materialists do, as though they exist, as though they provide an explanation for something, then we are seeing self-deception.

    And by the way, it is sad to see that your level of discourse has not improved one bit. Little substance. Lots of snark and name calling. We had two very substantive threads on abiogenesis where you had every opportunity to put some meat on the completely vague and baseless assertions you have been throwing around. Crickets . . .

  52. 52
    Joe says:

    AVS is a bluffing poseur living in denial. At best AVS is a first year biology student- first year of middle school.

    As for chaperones aiding protein folding, AVS totally ate that one, but good thing the ignoramus also has a short memory. AVS may be ignorant but he just can’t remember.

  53. 53
    Barb says:

    AVS continues,

    It is completely illogical to think that the abiogenesis of the first cell resulted in a complex organism like those seen in nature today. Logic points to the first cells being extremely simple, in the process of abiogenesis.

    Okay, then, explain some things to me.

    We know that all living cells fall into two major categories—those with a nucleus (eukaryotic) and those without (prokaryotic). Human, animal, and plant cells have a nucleus. Bacterial cells do not. Since prokaryotic cells are relatively less complex than eukaryotic cells, many believe that animal and plant cells must have evolved from bacterial cells.

    In fact, many teach that for millions of years, some “simple” prokaryotic cells swallowed other cells but did not digest them. Instead, the theory goes, unintelligent “nature” figured out a way not only to make radical changes in the function of the ingested cells but also to keep the adapted cells inside of the “host” cell when it replicated. [Encyclopædia Britannica, CD 2003, “Cell,” “The Mitochondrion and the Chloroplast,” subhead, “The Endosymbiont Hypothesis.”]

    How did nature figure this out? How did nature determine what radical changes needed to be made, and where they needed to be made, and when this process began and ended?

    Prokaryotic cells, though aren’t as simple as AVS would like for them to be. They have a semipermeable cell membrane with protein molecules that act as security guards for the cell, only allowing in what the cell requires, such as oxygen molecules. Some of these proteins have a hole through the middle of them that allows only specific types of molecules in and out of the cell. Other proteins are open on one side of the cell membrane and closed on the other. They have a docking site shaped to fit a specific substance. When that substance docks, the other end of the protein opens and releases the cargo through the membrane. All this activity is happening on the surface of even the simplest of cells.

    How, exactly, did this membrane come to be? What steps were required for the membrane to hold it what the cell needs to function and to keep out potentially damaging molecules?

    We also know that inside a prokaryotic cell is a watery fluid that is rich in nutrients, salts, and other substances. The cell uses these raw ingredients to manufacture the products it needs. But the process is not haphazard. The cell organizes thousands of chemical reactions so that they take place in a specific order and according to a set timetable.

    How did nature determine the order of these chemical reactions?

    A cell spends a lot of its time making proteins. The cell accomplishes this by making basic building blocks (amino acids), which are then delivered to ribosomes, which in turn link the amino acids in a precise order to form a specific protein.

    How did nature determine the order for the amino acids to be linked in order for proteins to be formed?

    This and other cell functions are guided by DNA. From the DNA, the ribosome receives a copy of detailed instructions that tell it which protein to build and how to build it.
    Each one folds into a unique three-dimensional shape. It is this shape that determines the specialized job that the protein will do.

    How does the protein find its way from where it was made to where it is needed?

    Also, the complex molecules in the simplest living thing cannot reproduce alone. Outside the cell, they break down. Inside the cell, they cannot reproduce without the help of other complex molecules. For example, enzymes are needed to produce a special energy molecule called adenosine triphosphate (ATP), but energy from ATP is needed to produce enzymes. Similarly, DNA is required to make enzymes, but enzymes are required to make DNA. Also, other proteins can be made only by a cell, but a cell can be made only with proteins. So which came first?

    Here’s what a few scientists have to say on the matter:
    The book Molecules to Living Cells explains that “the synthesis of the small-molecule building blocks is complex in itself.” It adds, however, that making such molecules “is child’s play in comparison to what must have followed in order to generate the first living cell.”

    What are the chances of atoms collecting together to form the simplest self-reproducing cell? In his book A Guided Tour of the Living Cell, Nobel Prize-winning scientist Christian de Duve admits: “If you equate the probability of the birth of a bacterial cell to that of the chance assembly of its component atoms, even eternity will not suffice to produce one for you.”

    Microbiologist Radu Popa in 2004 asked: “How can nature make life if we failed with all the experimental conditions controlled?” He also stated: “The complexity of the mechanisms required for the functioning of a living cell is so large that a simultaneous emergence by chance seems impossible.” [Between Necessity and Probability: Searching for the Definition and Origin of Life, by Radu Popa, 2004, p. 126-127, 129]

  54. 54
    AVS says:

    Oh joey, do you really want to bring that up again?
    The fact is that protein folding is almost entirely based on its primary structure. Few proteins have an absolute requirement for folding, most proteins can fold on their own in vitro, chaperones are used primarily to stop aggregation and interactions that would cause misfolding in vivo.
    Even look at wiki, it blatantly says
    “The common perception that chaperones are concerned primarily with protein folding is incorrect.”
    You have no idea what you are talking about. You and your friends are a joke. I could have a better conversation about biology with a wall.

  55. 55
    AVS says:

    Barbie, for the last time, I never said today’s prokaryotes are simple. They are far from simple. You guys couldn’t quote a source without twisting the meaning if your life depended on it.

  56. 56
    Barb says:

    Answer the questions in my post if you can, AVS.

  57. 57
    AVS says:

    Here ya go barb.
    1.Evolution. The changes did not need to be made all at once, it is symbiosis. Both organisms could survive and develop mechanisms by which they rely on each other.
    2.Membranes are formed by the amphiphilic nature of molecules. Membranes that allowed molecules in that the cell needed were advantageous, membranes that allowed damaging molecules in lead to death of the cell.
    3.Random sampling. Chemical pathways in the cell a lot of the time don’t have a definite order, or timing. Products are simply generated and they diffuse away. Regulation is the more important step.
    4.Specific proteins have a specific order. In terms of evolution, any order of amino acids can be sampled, the primary structure that provides a new function though can benefit the organism.
    5.Signal sequences.
    6.All of these chicken or the egg examples have to do with cells as we know them today. There are many possibilities for how these processes occurred in the first cells.

  58. 58
    Barb says:

    AVS responds,

    How did nature figure this out? How did nature determine what radical changes needed to be made, and whHow did nature figure this out? How did nature determine what radical changes needed to be made, and where they needed to be made, and when this process began and ended?
    Evolution. The changes did not need to be made all at once, it is symbiosis. Both organisms could survive and develop mechanisms by which they rely on each other.

    Step by step detailed instructions, please. Cite a relevant article that shows how these mechanisms developed and how symbiosis developed. “Evolution” isn’t an answer, it’s a cop out.

    How, exactly, did this membrane come to be? What steps were required for the membrane to hold it what the cell needs to function and to keep out potentially damaging molecules?

    Membranes are formed by the amphiphilic nature of molecules. Membranes that allowed molecules in that the cell needed were advantageous, membranes that allowed damaging molecules in lead to death of the cell.

    Again, detailed step by step instructions are needed. How did the amphiphilic nature of molecules develop by an unguided process? How did an unguided process “know” which molecules were advantageous to begin with?

    Without a membrane, a cell could not exist. The cell (and its contents) must be protected from water and the water-repellent fats of the membrane perform this task. But to form a membrane, a protein synthetic “apparatus” is needed—and this apparatus can function only if it’s held together by a membrane. Which came first?

    How did nature determine the order of these chemical reactions?

    Random sampling. Chemical pathways in the cell a lot of the time don’t have a definite order, or timing. Products are simply generated and they diffuse away. Regulation is the more important step.

    Hundreds of thousands of chemical reactions occur simultaneously in cells each day without any problems—and this all developed due to randomness? No, sorry. Not an answer. Another cop out.

    How did nature determine the order for the amino acids to be linked in order for proteins to be formed?

    Specific proteins have a specific order. In terms of evolution, any order of amino acids can be sampled, the primary structure that provides a new function though can benefit the organism.

    “Any” order of amino acids? No. Only 20 kinds of amino acids are needed to form proteins, and all those must be “left-handed” forms. Without that happening, you don’t have a cell. And you don’t have life. And then, after getting the 20 specific kinds, they have to be lined up in the right order for each distinctive protein, and in the exact shape required for each one.

    A typical protein has about one hundred amino acids and contains many thousands of atoms. In its life processes a living cell uses some 200,000 proteins. Two thousand of them are enzymes, special proteins without which the cell cannot survive. What are the chances of these enzymes forming at random in the soup—if you had the soup? One chance in 10^40,000. [This is 1 followed by 40,000 zeros.] Stated differently, the chance is the same as rolling dice and getting 50,000 sixes in a row. And that is for only 2,000 of the 200,000 needed for a living cell.8 So to get them all, roll 5,000,000 more sixes in a row!

    How does the protein find its way from where it was made to where it is needed?

    Signal sequences.

    Which came from where? And how did they develop?

    So which came first?

    All of these chicken or the egg examples have to do with cells as we know them today. There are many possibilities for how these processes occurred in the first cells.

    Detailed step by step instructions, please. Cite a relevant article showing how evolution did this.

  59. 59
    AVS says:

    Are you kidding me Barb? “Detailed step-by-step instructions”?
    It would take volumes of books to do that for all those questions. Not only that but science is still working on many of the steps, if not most of them and you know this. You’re just asking questions that you know science hasn’t found the answer to yet, and you think you’re oh so smart for it.
    You’re not. You and your friends here are a bunch of peckerwood jackasses, most of whom don’t know the first thing about biology and science in general.
    I’m not here to educate you, if you want to learn more about all these things enroll in a biology program at a University. Something tells me you wouldn’t last a semester. =)

  60. 60
    Mung says:

    gpuccio:

    Mung, BA and others:

    I think that there is no real fun in debating OOL theories. It’s so easy to win!

    That’s why I usually prefer macroevolution. The game is more entertaining there.

    I, on the other hand, am a reductive ID’ist.

    Reduce things as much as you like, they still don’t have an answer.

    The entire ID community, imo, should focus on the simplest living organisms out there. There will still be no explanation.

    You accept common descent. VJ Torley accepts common descent. Many other IDists accept common descent. Why?

    Is it because that’s what the evidence indicates?

    If so, why focus at all on macroevolution?

    Are there not enough protein families without known ancestors within prokaryotes!?

    If the evolutionists and the materialists cannot even explain the simplest cell, or the evolutionary relationships between the simplest cells, why take seriously anything they may say about common descent?

    Why complicate things?

    my .02 lira

  61. 61
    Mung says:

    Well, AVS, it’s just that step-by-step hand-waving isn’t quite yet the art you need it to be. But keep at it!

  62. 62
    AVS says:

    This is why you guys are the worst. You are the manifestation of the “god of the gaps” argument. You prey on the gaps in science, making it seem like we can’t explain things and using it as evidence. You don’t realize how slow of a process science is and how difficult it is to study these topics. Unfortunately for you, these tings will eventually be explained and your gaps will get smaller and smaller until they don’t exist anymore.

  63. 63
    Mung says:

    AVS:

    Mungy, the first cells were most certainly simple. Abiogenesis predicts this and is based on this.

    1. How do we know the first cells were most certainly simple?

    2. Why and how does “Abiogenesis” predict that the first cells were most certainly simple?

    3. How and why is “Abiogenesis” based upon the prediction that the first cells were most certainly simple?

    4. Define what you mean by “cell.”

    5. Define what you mean by “simple” as it refers to the cell in Q4.

    Permit me to present what I think AVS meant to say:

    Mungy, the first cells were most certainly simpler than the simplest know extant cells. Abiogenesis predicts that the earliest cells were nothing like extant cells and is based upon the unfounded non-scientific presupposition that there was some “simple” precursor to the simplest extant cells. It matters not that there is no theory of how to get from some hypo-theoretical simple precursor “proto-cell” to cells as we actually know them to be. But tt must have happened. Therefore you’re ignorant.

  64. 64
    AVS says:

    Mungy, if you can’t see the logic behind the assumption of extremely simple precursor cells existing in the early steps of abiogenesis, then you are hopeless. What exists now does not really matter when thinking about the first protocells because they were unlike anything that we see today. Abiogenesis is the search for a natural explanation for the generation of cellular life, and that first step was most certainly the simplest of simple cells. We now need to find out what that cell might have consisted of.

  65. 65
    Mung says:

    AVS:

    You are the manifestation of the “god of the gaps” argument. You prey on the gaps in science, making it seem like we can’t explain things and using it as evidence.

    So there are gaps that science has not filled?

    What gaps still exist that science has not yet explained?

    Do tell.

    You prey on the gaps in science, making it seem like we can’t explain things and using it as evidence.

    Well if you could explain it, it wouldn’t be a gap, right?

    So what’s your beef? That we’re telling the truth? That you have no explanation? That we just don’t trust you when you say that someday you will have an explanation?

  66. 66
    AVS says:

    Really Mungy?
    Obviously there are gaps. There are a lot of things that we don’t know. Did you really not know this?
    You guys are not telling the truth. You make it seem as if we have been studying these things for centuries and have been unable to provide explanations. We haven’t. Modern science has not been around very long and yet we still have made huge advances. Just imagine where we’ll be in another 100 years, or thousand years.

    ..that is if our religious fundamentalist friends don’t get a hold of a few nukes and blow modern society back into the stone age.

  67. 67
    Barb says:

    AVS continues,

    Are you kidding me Barb? “Detailed step-by-step instructions”?

    No. Not in the slightest. If evolution is going to claim to be the be-all, end-all theory of just about everything, then it had better have the evidence to back it up.

    It would take volumes of books to do that for all those questions.

    Tell the scientists to begin writing, then. Use flowcharts if necessary. I’m pretty sure the world’s computers can handle all that information.

    After all, Darwin’s book didn’t have more than 400 pages.

    Not only that but science is still working on many of the steps, if not most of them and you know this.

    And that is why much of the arguments in favor of evolutionary theory with respect to molecular evolution are simply arguments from ignorance.

    You’re just asking questions that you know science hasn’t found the answer to yet, and you think you’re oh so smart for it.

    No. I’m stating that until you have solid, verifiable evidence that “X” happened this way, you cannot (and should not) make sweeping statements about evolution. Much of science consists of arguments from ignorance, and that’s okay; nobody has all the answers. But then you don’t get to claim that you do have all the answers, either.

    You’re not. You and your friends here are a bunch of peckerwood jackasses, most of whom don’t know the first thing about biology and science in general.

    Ad hominem.

    Got anything better? Any real solid evidence for your statements? Just insults? How very junior high of you.

    I’m not here to educate you, if you want to learn more about all these things enroll in a biology program at a University. Something tells me you wouldn’t last a semester. =)

    Good thing I already have a bachelor’s degree. Now go back to studying before bedtime.

  68. 68
    AVS says:

    Ah, yes barbie, the age-old “I require every single step of evolution to be presented to me before I believe in something, even though I believe a god exists without any sort of evidence.”

    You are the UD poster child.
    Let me know when you get that stick out of your rear-end.

  69. 69
    gpuccio says:

    Mung at #60:

    Briefly:

    You accept common descent. VJ Torley accepts common descent. Many other IDists accept common descent. Why?

    Is it because that’s what the evidence indicates?

    Yes. And I have tried many times to explain why, and to explain what I mean by “common descent”.

    If so, why focus at all on macroevolution?

    It’s simple. Unguided common descent cannot explain macroevolution. Macroevolution is evidence of design.

    Are there not enough protein families without known ancestors within prokaryotes!?

    Yes, and there are almost as many in other living beings. Each protein family is evidence of design. Why focus only on OOL, when there is also macroevolution to be explained?

    Moreover, I have often argued that the same principle must be responsible for functional information in proteins, both at OOL and in the following evolution of life.

    Moreover, focusing on the appearance of recent protein families, and of other recent functional information, in higher species, like mammals or humans, allow us to have more detailed data for our reasoning, for obvious reasons. OOL is fascinating, but direct data about it are unfortunately not so abundant.

    If the evolutionists and the materialists cannot even explain the simplest cell, or the evolutionary relationships between the simplest cells, why take seriously anything they may say about common descent?

    Because some of the things they say about common descent make sense, and must therefore be taken seriously.

    We are here to find truth, not to fight evolutionists and materialists (although I must admit that it is a lot of fun to do that! 🙂 ).

    Why complicate things?

    The best way to complicate things, IMO, is to ignore facts. I simply try to stick to facts and to good reasoning.

  70. 70
    gpuccio says:

    Mung:

    About my views on CD, please look at my posts #76, 77, 78, 81, 82, 88, 98, 107, 113 and 121 here (mainly debating with BA):

    http://www.uncommondescent.com...../#comments

    Ant at my posts #49 and 56 here (debating with jerry):

    http://www.uncommondescent.com...../#comments

    In those posts I explain why I accept common decent, and what I mean by common descent.

  71. 71
    Barb says:

    AVS continues,

    Ah, yes barbie, the age-old “I require every single step of evolution to be presented to me before I believe in something, even though I believe a god exists without any sort of evidence.”

    Not really, no, but continue building that strawman. I don’t think it’s unreasonable or unrealistic for science to describe the steps evolution takes to get us to where we are now, do you?

    And I have presented evidence for my belief in God many times on this forum. Not my fault you can’t–or won’t–read.

    You are the UD poster child.
    Let me know when you get that stick out of your rear-end.

    Let me know when you have anything substantial to say.

    Sad little atheist troll.

  72. 72
    AVS says:

    Not at all, we all expect science to explain the steps of evolution. But what you’re asking for is every single incremental change in the course of evolution. That is not something that is going to happen overnight. Not even in our lifetime. The fact that you point to the gaps in knowledge and use them as evidence against evolution, as do many here, says a lot about you guys and what you consider “evidence.”
    It is also a good demonstration of your scientific illiteracy and overall lack of knowledge about how science works in general.

  73. 73
    Barb says:

    AVS writes,

    Not at all, we all expect science to explain the steps of evolution. But what you’re asking for is every single incremental change in the course of evolution. That is not something that is going to happen overnight. Not even in our lifetime.

    Yes, I am asking for every single incremental change and why it happens, and how an unguided process chooses what it does so that an organism can exist and reproduce.

    I know it won’t happen overnight. But evolutionary theory has been around for 150 years at least, and yet in searching through the literature (by this I mean peer-reviewed literature written by scientists for scientists), there’s no real explanation(s). Drs. Michael Denton and Michael Behe have already written books about this.

    The fact that you point to the gaps in knowledge and use them as evidence against evolution, as do many here, says a lot about you guys and what you consider “evidence.”

    I think arguments from ignorance are expected when discussing science because, as I pointed out, nobody knows everything. New knowledge is constantly being discovered and added to what we already know.

    Scientific inquiry involves collecting and analyzing evidence, and then choosing the best theory. Related to this is empiricism, which is based on observed and validated evidence. With evolution, we can’t directly observe how life began on Earth.

    It is also a good demonstration of your scientific illiteracy and overall lack of knowledge about how science works in general.

    Tell that to the scientists I quoted above. They acknowledge the lack of information relating to molecular evolutionary theory. Are they wrong in making those statements? Why or why not?

  74. 74
    AVS says:

    The problem is that you and your friends here have a mountain of ignorance to overcome. The overall idea of evolution has been around for a while and is constantly being refined by modern science. The problem is, we don’t even fully understand how organisms work today, this makes putting the pieces of the evolution puzzle back together extremely difficult. To have the level of understanding that you want about evolution requires virtually everything to be known about current biological processes as well as a good understanding, if not complete understanding, of the biological processes in ancestral organisms as well as their interactions. To expect this type of knowledge in a couple hundred years, like I said, shows your lack of knowledge on the subjects at hand.
    The guys you have quoted above know damn well who their audience is and caters to them. They can present science however they want and know that you guys will eat it right up. They also know they can’t be scientifically refuted because they prey on the gaps in knowledge. It’s a very favorable position for them to be in, not to mention the huge amount of money they are probably making by being “creationist scientists.”
    At this point I could probably join their ranks. I would be a great “creationist scientist” because I understand what we know and don’t know and could yell and scream about it all day. Maybe write a book and make some good coin while I’m at it.
    But I don’t. Because it’s bullshit. It’s not science.

  75. 75
    Barb says:

    AVS goes on,

    The guys you have quoted above know damn well who their audience is and caters to them.

    “The guys” I quoted above are, respectively, a Nobel prize-winning biochemist who believed in evolution and a biology professor at Portland State University who holds two PhDs (ecology and microbiology). They’re respected scientists who know far more about evolutionary theory than you do.

  76. 76
    AVS says:

    And you don’t think these very smart individuals realize how much money there is to be made off the religious population? Just a thought.
    Like I said, they understand the science and its current shortcomings and they can twist their arguments accordingly. It’s really not all that difficult to persuade the scientifically illiterate with seemingly scientific arguments, especially when the argument goes along with their cherished, ignorant world-view.
    I’,m pretty sure you posted the wrong link by the way.
    Always remember to check and edit your work! I guess you didn’t do very well in school.

  77. 77
    Barb says:

    You go on to state that:

    The overall idea of evolution has been around for a while and is constantly being refined by modern science. The problem is, we don’t even fully understand how organisms work today, this makes putting the pieces of the evolution puzzle back together extremely difficult.

    That’s fine. That is what scientific progress is for, to further our understanding of the natural world. However, one caveat: you don’t get to state that something is a proven fact if you really have no idea how it works.

    To have the level of understanding that you want about evolution requires virtually everything to be known about current biological processes as well as a good understanding, if not complete understanding, of the biological processes in ancestral organisms as well as their interactions.

    And if all current biology rests on this theory, then there had better be sufficient evidence to support it. The problem is that we probably will not ever know the biological processes in ancestral organisms. Going that far back is pure speculation.

    To expect this type of knowledge in a couple hundred years, like I said, shows your lack of knowledge on the subjects at hand.

    I didn’t say that I expected this type of knowledge. But for scientists to state unequivocally that evolution is a fact requires solid evidence, which is not to be found in any of the major peer-reviewed journals. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, as Sagan said. If evolution is a fact and underlies all of modern biology, then detailed step by step explanations are required to understand biological processes. Yes, this is a big step. Yes, it can’t be done in ten years, or even twenty years. But if evolution is going to be touted as an irrefutable fact, then the scientists touting it had better be able to back up that statement with convincing evidence.
    The biggest complaint I have is that evolution has practically ceased being a scientific theory and has become more of an ideology for some. That shouldn’t happen.

  78. 78
    Barb says:

    AVS continues,

    And you don’t think these very smart individuals realize how much money there is to be made off the religious population? Just a thought.

    Why would they? De Duve, to my knowledge, is not a Christian, nor had he ever claimed to be one. Neither is the professor. They are, however, intellectually honest enough to admit that evolutionary theory cannot explain all things.

    Like I said, they understand the science and its current shortcomings and they can twist their arguments accordingly.

    Can you provide proof that they twist their arguments? De Duve argued that chance was at the edifice of evolution in one of his books. If you’re going to make accusations, you’re going to have to come up with something more substantial than innuendo.

    It’s really not all that difficult to persuade the scientifically illiterate with seemingly scientific arguments, especially when the argument goes along with their cherished, ignorant world-view.

    Yawn. Strawman.

    I’,m pretty sure you posted the wrong link by the way.

    Oh, so you didn’t bother following it? Nice of you to admit your ignorance.

    Always remember to check and edit your work! I guess you didn’t do very well in school.

    I have a bachelor of science degree, and you have…? Nothing substantial besides the usual insults. Sad little troll is sad.

  79. 79
    AVS says:

    What? You meant to send me a link to Duve’s wiki page?
    Let’s see what that page says about him:

    “His work has contributed to the emerging consensus that the endosymbiotic theory is correct”

    “de Duve was brought up as a Roman Catholic. However his later years indicated inclination towards agnosticism, if not strict atheism. He was opposed to the notion of a creator.”

    “It would be an exaggeration to say I’m not afraid of death,” he explicitly said to a Belgian newspaper Le Soir just a month before his death, but I’m not afraid of what comes after, because I’m not a believer.”

    “He strongly supported biological evolution as a fact, and dismissive of creation science and intelligent design, as explicitly stated in his last book”

    I’m not really sure how this guy helps your argument…

  80. 80
    Barb says:

    Wow. You really don’t get it, do you?

    I wasn’t referencing “creationist scientists.” I was referencing scientists who explicitly AREN’T creationists, or even religious, but who still see problems with evolutionary theory. That alone bolsters my argument, because my argument is coming from a scientific side and not a religious one.

    AVS, that’s some serious epic fail on your part.

  81. 81
    AVS says:

    And the problem that Duve saw with evolutionary theory was….?
    Apparently he didn’t see too much of a problem if that’s the kind of descriptions that are given about him.

  82. 82
    Barb says:

    Try reading my posts.

    In his book A Guided Tour of the Living Cell, Nobel Prize-winning scientist Christian de Duve admits: “If you equate the probability of the birth of a bacterial cell to that of the chance assembly of its component atoms, even eternity will not suffice to produce one for you.”

    While he advocated chance as being the cause (not sure if this is the best word to use or not) of evolution, he also admitted that it didn’t adequately explain how random sampling and natural selection could produce a bacterial cell.

    He, like you, stuck with evolutionary theory and this is despite the fact that he recognized that evolution could not produce even a simple cell by chance.

    Do you have a case of the Fridays? Is there some reason why my posts, which aren’t laden with physics equations and references to molecular biology journals, are so difficult for you to understand?

  83. 83
    AVS says:

    So he acknowledges that abiogenesis is not a simple process, and was in fact complicated? Is this supposed to be an earth-shaterring revelation of some sort?I thought you were trying to make a point?
    He didnt say that abiogenesis/evolution CANT produce bacteria, he said that our current understanding did not explain how they arose.
    Again, you guys are twisting words.

  84. 84
    Barb says:

    He acknowledges that chance alone could not assemble a bacterial cell. And this would be a simple bacterial cell, or a proto-cell. You stated earlier that these cells were simpler than the ones we currently know and study. How is it that eternity would not be long enough to produce a proto-cell if it is simpler than the cells of today?

    You’re the one twisting his words, which are clearly marked above in italics. He believed that abiogenesis could produce cells because as an atheist/agnostic, he has to. The alternative is unthinkable (creation).

    He wrote a number of books on OoL (http://www.plosbiology.org/art.....io.1001671): “he wrote more than a dozen books in English and in French, including A Guided Tour of the Living Cell; Blueprint for a Cell: the Nature and Origin of Life; Vital Dust: Life as a Cosmic Imperative; Life Evolving: Molecules, Mind, and Meaning; and Singularities: Landmarks on the Pathways of Life.”

    Here’s a review of his book Vital Dust [http://www.arn.org/docs/reviews/rev005.htm]. While noting that de Duve is a determinist, the book reviewer notes that “it falls far short of showing that Monod was wrong — or, perhaps, that design theorists such as Charles Thaxton are wrong, when they argue that known physical and chemical regularities are insufficient to account for the specified complexity of even the simplest organisms. In particular, de Duve’s scenario for the origin of life, in which “protometabolism” produces the materials necessary for the RNA world of the first self-replicating molecules, is, he admits, “purely conjectural” (p. 45). Hence, the reader is left with a sense of grand claims for determinism which cannot be sustained by empirical particulars.”

    You cannot have a theory that claims to explain the diversity of life on Earth without some detailed instructions as to how that life came about. De Duve acknowledged this. You do not.

  85. 85
    AVS says:

    Good thing abiogenesis isn’t the study of the formation of bacterial cells from inorganic matter. It is the study of the formation of the first protocells, which were unlike anything we see today, from inorganic matter.

    Duve simply points out the gaps in our current knowledge. We all know they’re there, and this is because science is an ongoing process. Like I said, it doesn’t happen overnight.

    Pointing out, that Duve is pointing out gaps in knowlege doesn’t really help anything you are saying.

    The problem is when the other scientists you named start taking these knowledge gaps and concocting ideas such as “irreducible complexity.” Again. It’s unscientific bullshit.

  86. 86
    Upright BiPed says:

    AVS,

    …concocting ideas such as “irreducible complexity.” Again. It’s unscientific bullshit.

    To translate the recorded information in the genome into physical effects within the cell requires an irreducibly complex system, just like any other instance of translated information. This was predicted by von Neumann and has been subsequently demonstrated to be true in all cases of translated information. It was the logical basis of Francis Crick’s famous “adapter hypothesis” following his eludication of DNA structure, and the operation of the system was demonstrated in the methodology of Nirenberg’s experiment in 1961. These material conditions are required to organize a Darwinian-capable self-replicating cell, and obviously must arise prior to the onset of evolution.

  87. 87
    Barb says:

    Good thing abiogenesis isn’t the study of the formation of bacterial cells from inorganic matter. It is the study of the formation of the first protocells, which were unlike anything we see today, from inorganic matter.

    Life from non-life. Which, as we all know, is not possible scientifically.

    Pointing out, that Duve is pointing out gaps in knowlege doesn’t really help anything you are saying.

    It does bolster my argument because scientists acknowledge that evolution doesn’t answer many questions, despite the fact that it’s treated by other scientists (notably Richard Dawkins) as though it does. As stated before: you can’t have evolution at the top of a pyramid if there’s nothing underneath (detailed instructions) to support it.

    The problem is when the other scientists you named start taking these knowledge gaps and concocting ideas such as “irreducible complexity.” Again. It’s unscientific bullshit.

    Michael Behe coined the phrase, not Christian de Duve. You should know that.

  88. 88
    Axel says:

    They are, indeed, knowledge gaps, AVS, but not gaps in knowledge; instead, quite the opposite.

    What you posit as background knowledge are, rather, small islands of putatively relevant and genuine knowledge, floating about on a vast ocean of unambiguously genuine ignorance.

    Forget the pejorative overtones of the word, ‘ignorance’, and just accept it for its literal meaning.

    I mean it’s beyond laughable to talk abut gaps in knowledge of evolution when the simple primordial fact is, that Duve – evidently no willing friend of ID – undermined its very basis, when he acknowledged that eternity would not suffice to produce a bacterial cell, from a chance assembly of the component atoms.

    Surely, this has been confirmed mathematically by others as an ineluctable truth, so why persist with ‘stamp collecting’, as if there were the remotest possiblity that Stanley Gibbons might one day morph into Einstein?

  89. 89
    AVS says:

    Not possible scientifically? Really? Then why is there even a field of abiogenesis? apparently some of the top scientists in the world disagree…no?
    How many times do i have to say it? Yes we know evolution has not answered all of our questions, that’s because we don’t entirely understand how it works. It does explain a lot, but there is a vast amount of information that is still yet to be sifted through.
    There certainly is support beneath evolution, it’s based on studies done in every field of biology over the last 100+ years. I didn’t say Duve came up with irreducible complexity. I said he built on the same ideas of Duve’s (the gaps in knowledge)and extrapolated them out to “oh well we don’t know how it evolved, therefore it couldn’t have evolved.” Irreducible complexity! WOohoo!
    Believe me, I’ve seen enough of BA’s copy/paste posts to know who coined irreducible complexity, don’t you worry.

  90. 90
    AVS says:

    Again, I think that quote is taken out of context. No one is trying to show how “bacterial” cells were formed from inorganic molecules. the cells that were formed inn the early stages of abiogenesis were unlike anything we see today. As I said, apparently Duve didn’t do much to undermine abiogenesis as you like us to believe as it’s still a hot topic in research.

  91. 91
    Axel says:

    ‘the cells that were formed inn the early stages of abiogenesis were unlike anything we see today.’

    Sounds uncommonly like wild conjecture, expressed by you as fact. Tell us how you came to discern the early stages of that posited, but as yet, mythical abiogenesis, AVS.

    ‘… it’s till a hot topic in research’!!!!!!!!!!!

    Love it! Love it! You mean like the infinite multiverse, dark matter, black holes, etc?

    ‘Mr Stanly Gibbons! Mr Stanley Gibbons! Paging Mr Stanley Gibbons.’

  92. 92
    Upright BiPed says:

    Aren’t you going to challenge me AVS?

  93. 93
    AVS says:

    Yes, I love having the same conversation over and over again here! Feel free to scroll up about 80 comments and read for yourself.

  94. 94
    Upright BiPed says:

    You must be mistaken; I’ve made only one previous comment on this thread at #2 and it wasn’t even addressed to you. Furthermore, this is a topic that you have (thus far) refused to engage in – specifically saying that you would not discuss this line of issues.

  95. 95
    AVS says:

    That was for axel, Upright.
    What makes you think I want to talk about it now exactly?
    Anyway, barb here says irreducible complexity is Behe’s idea, are you saying it’s not?

  96. 96
    Upright BiPed says:

    Yes, you are correct – you’ve made it abundantly clear that you refuse to enagage me on these issues – preferring to insulate your comments from evidence.

    I take you at your word on that.

  97. 97
    AVS says:

    Is that what you do here biped? Find any possible way you can weasel your way into a conversation in order to ask the same question over and over and over again?

    “How did the translation system evolve”

    A question that you know science hasn’t even come close to answering yet.

    You’re quite the one-trick pony.
    Well enjoy your act.

  98. 98
    Barb says:

    AVS continues,

    I didn’t say Duve came up with irreducible complexity. I said he built on the same ideas of Duve’s..

    You wrote, “The problem is when the other scientists you named start taking these knowledge gaps and concocting ideas such as “irreducible complexity.” Again. It’s unscientific bullshit.”

    You implied that one of the scientists I quoted, either de Duve or Radu Popa, came up with irreducible complexity. Try proofreading your post before hitting the “post comment” button.

  99. 99
    AVS says:

    Don’t get your panties in a wad barb, I was referring to Behe when I said that.

    I did not imply that one of the scientists you quoted came up with irreducible complexity. I know this because I specifically said “scientists you NAMED” not quoted. It could’ve been any of the four you named. And in all honesty when I skimmed your post at first, the only names I saw were Behe and Denton. This is a useless conversation. If you have anything important to say, let’s hear it.

  100. 100
    Barb says:

    Aww…is the whiny little troll getting angry now? Is it naptime?

    You’ve repeatedly refused to answer questions posed to you in this (and other) threads. If any conversation here is useless, it’s probably due to you.

  101. 101
    AVS says:

    Keep telling yourself that barb. You’ve yet to come up with an intelligent thought of your own.
    Toodaloo.

  102. 102
    Upright BiPed says:

    AVS,

    Is that what you do here biped? Find any possible way you can weasel your way into a conversation in order to ask the same question over and over and over again?

    You attacked the concept of IC. Shall I now assume that not only will you refuse to engage the evidence you mock from a safe distance, but you also want a hall pass for anything you say, to the extent that no one can say anything to you at all?

    “How did the translation system evolve”

    I didn’t ask you this question, and I have no intention of asking you this question. I already know you have no ideas, as very abundantly demonstrated by the fact that you can’t even properly conceptualize the issue.

    Day after day on this forum your pound your fist on the desk, apparently exasperated, “The first cells were simpler than today’s cells”, as if this concept is somehow difficult to understand. It apparently never occurs to you that the complexity of the cell is not even the issue. The onset of control is the issue.

    Your decapacitated reasoning skills make me think of another participant on this forum, an ID proponent who hangs out here from time to time. He is certain to the very core of his being that women have directly contributed less to science and mathematics than men have, and for him that fairly indisputable fact actually means something. He can throw a few mysogynistic treasures on it from his belief system and get some weird comfort from the whole deal. When it comes to simpler cells, you two share the same shoes. You’re both eat up with the same anti-intellectual certainty.

    – – – – – – – – – –

    Oh, and by the way, irreducible complexity is the primary material requirement to gain control within the cell. If you’d care to challenge me on this in earnest, I will be happy to respond.

  103. 103
    AVS says:

    Whatever you have to tell yourself to sleep at night Upright!
    Enjoy!

  104. 104
    Upright BiPed says:

    A powerful retort AVS. Really.

  105. 105
    Mung says:

    Got to give you credit UPB. You recognize and acknowledge a powerful retort when you see one!

    Upright BiPed:

    To translate the recorded information in the genome into physical effects within the cell requires an irreducibly complex system, just like any other instance of translated information.

    I’m guessing it was that latter bit that threw AVS off his game.

Leave a Reply