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Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

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Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution
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micah1116Posts: 58Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2010 2:12 am Gender: Male

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution


Allow to me to present http://creation.com/changing-chromosome-numbers. Not a peer reviewed journal. It is, instead, a page from the website that you plagiarized in your first post in this debate, so presumably you think they have some kind of reliability as a source. Lets take a peak at what they have to say on the issue.


Now, it appears from what you provided, that organisms with differing chromosome numbers, but of the same kind, can interbreed and have offspring, but how is this evidence for evolution? does losing a chromosome or fusing chromosomes produce new structures? You admitted that chromosome fusion wouldn't turn an ape into a human, so your basically saying somehow it magically happened, how scientific. :roll:

Provide a definition of a new morphological structure otherwise you will keep moving the goalposts. Make it unambiguous and concise please.



I'd like to stick with this subject, as it is the most important subject, in my opinion, regarding evolution. This isn't too hard of a concept, and I'm going to assume that you are smart enough to know what I'm looking for. For a reptile to evolve into a bird, it would have to acquire wings, obviously. This could not occur due to changes in shape and size. A new morphological structure is a structure that is entirely new, not changing the shape of an already existing structure, how would changing the shape of an already existing structure create a new one, and explain how it got there to begin with? Can changing the shape of a bacteria, cause it to evolve into a mammal? If you can't show me where even a single new structure new to the species has occured, how do you expect me to even begin to believe in evolution? I'm sorry I'm not crazy enough to believe such a thing. The fossil "record" shows no such events ever occured, and most evolutionists admit that the fossil record is one giant gap, so they invented puncuated equilibrium, which as you should know, states that evolution happened in great jumps very quickly. So they are saying since there is no evidence that evolution occured slowly, that is evidence that is happened quickly! They will never even ponder the thought, that maybe it didn't happen at all. Here's a question I'd like for you to answer. I'm assuming you believe that evolution is a slow gradual process. Here's a question, how do you know it happens slowly? The reason you say it happens slowly, is because we don't observe it happening.

Now, since you didn't answer my question, I'll ask it again. What is the mechanism for permanent morphological change? And what observable evidence do you have that supports it? We have never observed a permanent morphological structure arise, so why should I put my faith in the idea that is happened long ago and far away? I know exactly why you do, it's because your running away from the thought that creeps into your head on a daily basis, which is that God created life. You claim that I'm shifting the goalposts, which is absurd. You are claiming that all phylum of life are related, and I'm asking for one such example that we observe. Showing me a chart of how you think something happened, is not science. You can't even invent some magical mechanism for this permanent morphological change that you say happened long ago and far away.
Wed Nov 03, 2010 9:19 am
SquawkModeratorUser avatarPosts: 2011Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:25 pm Gender: Tree

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

Mod Note:

I deleted Micah's post by accident, I clicked on edit rather than quote and replaced it with a post of my own. I have now restored it to it's previous content. This only lasted for 2 minutes, but someone might have been confused and I prefer transparency.
Pope Rat: "Exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."

Squawk response: "O Rly?"
Wed Nov 03, 2010 11:28 am
SquawkModeratorUser avatarPosts: 2011Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:25 pm Gender: Tree

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

Micah wrote:
Squawk wrote:Allow to me to present http://creation.com/changing-chromosome-numbers. Not a peer reviewed journal. It is, instead, a page from the website that you plagiarized in your first post in this debate, so presumably you think they have some kind of reliability as a source. Lets take a peak at what they have to say on the issue.


Now, it appears from what you provided, that organisms with differing chromosome numbers, but of the same kind, can interbreed and have offspring, but how is this evidence for evolution? does losing a chromosome or fusing chromosomes produce new structures? You admitted that chromosome fusion wouldn't turn an ape into a human, so your basically saying somehow it magically happened, how scientific. :roll:


You've included a smiley for rolling your eyes? Seriously? What do you think I should do after such a massive goal post shift? You stated

Micah wrote:A fused chromosome could not possibly be fixed in the population. If an ape had a fused chromosome it would have to find another ape in the opposite sex with the same fused chromosome in order to reproduce.


Just how many times do I have to show you to be wrong before you realise that you are wrong? Are you actually incapable of piecing together two pieces of information to create a whole? I explained, at length, not two posts ago, why a fusion of chromosomes in the human line was evidence of common ancestry. Indeed you may well recall that I stated it was essential that it was found. Your reply was that a fusion event was not possible due to infertility issues, and now that I've shown this to be incorrect you simply ignore it and move on? You then have the sheer cheek to imply that I'm the one who is unscientific?

Then we come to yet another creationist canard. The "kind". What is a kind? I know of one creationist who tried to tell me that the definition of "kind" was identical to that of species, and then proceeded to tell me that all wasps were a kind. I've seen people argue that "kind" is equivalent to genus, yet others have said it is family, and all have been in complete denial when I point out that those taxonomic ranks are applied retrospectively and are not strictly determined.

So, define kind please.

Micah wrote:
Squawk wrote:Provide a definition of a new morphological structure otherwise you will keep moving the goalposts. Make it unambiguous and concise please.



I'd like to stick with this subject, as it is the most important subject, in my opinion, regarding evolution.


Since we have established that you have no clue about evolution I find this statement laughable. I'll state that in my own opinion molecular evidence is far far stronger than any aspect of comparative anatomy or paleontology. But I'll humour you and see what yo have to say.


Micah wrote: This isn't too hard of a concept, and I'm going to assume that you are smart enough to know what I'm looking for.

I doubt you'll even understand the answer.

Micah wrote: For a reptile to evolve into a bird, it would have to acquire wings, obviously. This could not occur due to changes in shape and size.

What do you propose arms/legs are? It's not really correct to say that birds evolved from reptiles. Birds evolved from the thoropod dinosaurs, which evolved from what are often termed reptiles though it doesn't mean reptiles in the modern sense. You already have a structure in place, the forward legs, which over many generations evolved into wings. Did you even bother to google "evolution of bird wing"? Second link, where is the new structure you require?
http://www.dinosaur-world.com/feathered ... lution.htm

Micah wrote: A new morphological structure is a structure that is entirely new, not changing the shape of an already existing structure

Perfect. You realise of course that the birds wing doesn't fit this definition? Can you supply an instance of evolutionary theory requiring such a structure to form?.

Micah wrote:How would changing the shape of an already existing structure create a new one, and explain how it got there to begin with?

Err, well, if you change the shape of an existing structure over generations then the explanation of how the new structure arose is, err, through small modifications over generations. Maybe I misread this, but it seems to be the most obvious question you could post.


Micah wrote:Can changing the shape of a bacteria, cause it to evolve into a mammal?

No

Micah wrote: If you can't show me where even a single new structure new to the species has occured, how do you expect me to even begin to believe in evolution?

I expect you not only to begin to believe in evolution but to realise that your past position was foolish due to the enormous weight of evidence that I have piled against you over the last 20 or so posts, including a complete refutation of every objection you have come accross when you have been specific and despite your numerous attempts to goal post shift. I expect you to accept evolutionary theory because it demonstrably works and is consistent with all evidence ever gathered by anyone anywhere.

You're making a straw man of evolutionary theory by asking for new structures, and I don't expect you to accept the idiotic version of evolution that you seem to want to present. So, I ask, give me a single example of a structure in a species, not shared by it's sister species, that evolutionary theory has to explain but can't, and I'll explain how it got there. I'd actually contend that you can't do this, the only short term mutations that are likely to add such massive changes and be survivable are segmentation (extra sections of millipedes, for example). In short, I think you're asking for something that is not a part of evolutionary theory.


Micah wrote: I'm sorry I'm not crazy enough to believe such a thing.

You don't even know what you're asking, never mind what you accept.

micah wrote: The fossil "record" shows no such events ever occured, and most evolutionists admit that the fossil record is one giant gap, so they invented puncuated equilibrium, which as you should know, states that evolution happened in great jumps very quickly.

Again telling me what I should know. I would suggest that you should realise that being shown to be wrong over and over again on a particular subject might just indicate that you are wrong about that subject. Read this debate again, from start to finish. Find how many times you were right, find how many times I was. The very fact that you keep goal post shifting without indication or acknowledgement of errors indicates that you are, at least subconsciously, aware of this.

Now, what events should the fossil record show. Rather than me going off and presenting a given event, why don't you tell me which events don't exist. I'm inclined to say this because you mentioned the wings from reptiles, which you presumably thought was an example of a new structure. Since you've now been educated (you did read my link or spend 5 minutes on google, didn't you), you realise that one again you were wrong. So, ask for a specific example. I note from your debate with proteus that you're likely to ignore anything I write here.

MIcah wrote: So they are saying since there is no evidence that evolution occured slowly, that is evidence that is happened quickly!

Do you have any idea what "quickly" refers to in punctuated equilibrium? I hope you're not making the stupid assumption that it refers to periods of only a few thousand years. Could you define exactly what you think "quickly" means.

Micah wrote:They will never even ponder the thought, that maybe it didn't happen at all. Here's a question I'd like for you to answer. I'm assuming you believe that evolution is a slow gradual process. Here's a question, how do you know it happens slowly? The reason you say it happens slowly, is because we don't observe it happening.

I despair, I really do. I pointed out in post one that I was confident enough that you would accept this as not to do so was simple reality denial. Reality denial it seems to be.

Tell me, how can evolution be anything other than slow? Humans, 3 billion base pairs in the genome. 150 mutations (slightly under IIRC) per individual when compared to their parents. Novel mutations have to spread through the population. Large mutations are likely to restrict fitness in the individual.

1. It's observed
2. The mechanisms prevent it being anything other than slow

You do realise that evolution happens to populations, not to individuals, right?

Micah wrote:Now, since you didn't answer my question, I'll ask it again. What is the mechanism for permanent morphological change?

I did answer it. I'll do so again. Decent with inherited modification. Evolution.

Micah wrote: And what observable evidence do you have that supports it? We have never observed a permanent morphological structure arise, so why should I put my faith in the idea that is happened long ago and far away?

Without any access to visual evidence (comparative anatomy, paleontology etc), evolutionary theoryis not impacted massively and suffers little of consequence. Your problem here is a failure to grasp the sheer significance of genetic evidence, though I suppose I should have expected as much given the constant inability to grasp the significance of the information I presented on ERV's and chromosome fusion.

In short, actual structural evidence is superfluous to requirements when deciding to accept evolutionary theory.

That said, the fossil record is particularly abundent, and given what you now know about rates of evolution you should realise that if we wish to look for large changes in morphology we are going to be looking at periods of vast time. You already argued that the large variation present in the dogs don't count. The example you tried to give was the birds wing which took several million years to evolve, but as you've now seen that doesn't fit your idiotic definition either.

And so, rather than bothering to present anything, I'm simply going to say that what you are asking for is not a part of evolutionary theory, you are arguing against a straw man. That is, unless you can identify an extant structure (one present right now in a given organism) that you don't think could have evolved. If you do that, I'll show you how it evolved.

And here's the fun part. Lets just say I can't do that? What is the only honest answer? God? Hell no, the only honest answer is "I don't know". But I will know, and you'll be exposed once again.

Micah wrote: I know exactly why you do, it's because your running away from the thought that creeps into your head on a daily basis, which is that God created life.

Other than the reference to zeus (why are we bringing zeus into this?) we are talking about evolutionary theory, not abiogenesis. Please stay on subject.

Micah wrote:You claim that I'm shifting the goalposts, which is absurd.

You are, constantly, every time I point out an error. Want me to list instances of it? I will, but then you'll ignore that like you have ignored every other bit of information I've presented.

Micah wrote: You are claiming that all phylum of life are related, and I'm asking for one such example that we observe. Showing me a chart of how you think something happened, is not science. You can't even invent some magical mechanism for this permanent morphological change that you say happened long ago and far away.


I can't invent some magical mechanism? You're right, I can't, and I don't. You do though, you invent your magic man, Zeus. I presume it's Zeus anyway. Why do you want to believe in magic so much?

Why don't you tell me what you want to observe? I don't think you can, I think you know that what you ask for is a straw man of evolutionary theory, and you are too scared to admit it because it might, just might, rock your faith in God. Scary thought isn't it. You might be wrong, there really might not be a God. That's why you try to debate people like me.

Your faith is weak, and you try to defend it by attacking proponents of evolutionary theory in the hope that you might win. Well, against qball you did. He didn't know much evolutionary theory, and so you got to feel superior.

No longer. I do know this shit, and what I don't know I'll find out. Now you're scared because I've shown all your previous assertions to be in error. No longer can you bullshit about ERVs. No longer can you bullshit about Chromosome fusion. You should re-read this debate and ask yourself how it is that I can show you to be wrong over and over and over and still you keep coming back with new stuff and the process repeats.

##edit: Improved grammar
Pope Rat: "Exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."

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Wed Nov 03, 2010 11:29 am
micah1116Posts: 58Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2010 2:12 am Gender: Male

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

I'm going to make my post very short and to the point. Do you have any evidence that decent with modification can create new structures? You know what a new structure is. How can asking for an example of a new structure evolving, be outside of evolutionary theory, like you say?

That said, the fossil record is particularly abundent, and given what you now know about rates of evolution you should realise that if we wish to look for large changes in morphology we are going to be looking at periods of vast time. You already argued that the large variation present in the dogs don't count. The example you tried to give was the birds wing which took several million years to evolve, but as you've now seen that doesn't fit your idiotic definition either.



Hold on, how do you know birds took several millions of years to evolve? You don't know they evolved, and your going to give a length of time in which they evolved? And if I identify a structure that I don't think could evolve, your going to show me how it evolved? You don't seem to understand what science is do you?

Why don't you show me a structure evolving, rather than, how you think something evolved. If you can show me that life does indeed evolve, then we can talk about exactly how they evolve. Show me an example of a new structure evolving, and then we can examine what the mechanism was, easy enough?

Also, back to ERV's, the arguement about ERV's and correct me if 'm wrong, is that they are evidence for common ancestry because they are found the same place in the genome, and the probability of such by chance is impossible. Well, I showed you several examples of where ERV's are not in the genome at all when they should be, in simple terms, could you tell me why they are not in the genome?
Thu Nov 04, 2010 7:04 am
SquawkModeratorUser avatarPosts: 2011Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:25 pm Gender: Tree

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

Micah wrote:I'm going to make my post very short and to the point. Do you have any evidence that decent with modification can create new structures? You know what a new structure is. How can asking for an example of a new structure evolving, be outside of evolutionary theory, like you say?


Because if you can't provide an example of a structure that exists that can't be explained then what you're asking for is a structure that is not present in the real world. Since evolutionary theory is an explanation of the real world that would not be a part of evolutionary theory.

So, name your structure, and I'll show you how it evolved. Fail to name it, and we'll know for certain you are arguing a straw man. You tried once, with the birds wing. You failed. Try again and fail again, or concede the point.

Micah wrote:
That said, the fossil record is particularly abundent, and given what you now know about rates of evolution you should realise that if we wish to look for large changes in morphology we are going to be looking at periods of vast time. You already argued that the large variation present in the dogs don't count. The example you tried to give was the birds wing which took several million years to evolve, but as you've now seen that doesn't fit your idiotic definition either.


Hold on, how do you know birds took several millions of years to evolve? You don't know they evolved, and your going to give a length of time in which they evolved? And if I identify a structure that I don't think could evolve, your going to show me how it evolved? You don't seem to understand what science is do you?

The hypothesis is that the birds evolved from thoropod dinosaurs (it's a theory now, but I'll call it a hypothesis before mentioning the evidence). You stated that a new structure would have to form, the wing. When we look at a modern birds wing and the bone structure of a thoropod dinosaur, we find that your assertion of a new structure is bullshit. We find that small variation in shape and size (which you have already alluded to accepting) is perfectly sufficient to get from one to the other.

To establish how long such a small amount of variation actually took we just look to the fossil record. Since I have no doubt you won't read anything I present I'll just link to a website that you have already used (badly) as a reference, which mentions some of the intermediate forms between thoropod dinos and modern birds. Dating of the strata in which these fossils are found gives us a good indication of how long certain transitions took. Of course new fossils might revise time scales, there was a discovery just last year that revolutionized tertrapod evolution, pushing it back by several million years, the same could happen for birds.

http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CC/CC214.html

Of course we can then talk about atavism in birds if you like, the old favourite of a chicken with teeth, but I doubt it's necessary.

Micah wrote:Why don't you show me a structure evolving, rather than, how you think something evolved. If you can show me that life does indeed evolve, then we can talk about exactly how they evolve. Show me an example of a new structure evolving, and then we can examine what the mechanism was, easy enough?

Of course not easy, you're asking for a straw man of evolutionary theory. Easy enough to show you have no clue what you are asking for.

Evolution happens to populations, not to individuals. For that to be the case there has to be a given percentage of the population that share a particular trait via inheritance (ie, it's genetic). In order to see that trait evolve the population must be observable over a large number of generations, enough for the new variant to have some influence.

Now, you go and find me a species with a short enough reproduction cycle to observe such a thing and we can start to look at what you ask for. Otherwise, what you are asking for is a straw man of evolution. If you contest this, explain why.

As an example of exactly why this is impossible, take height of humans. The average height of a human has increased markedly over the last few hundred years. I can prove that easily enough. Evolution? Hell no, nothing to do with evolution, it's simply better nutrition and lifestyle. A simple variable such as average height would take millenia to see even the smallest impact in a species such as humans, and yet you're asking for something much more difficult, and in a much shorter space of time. In short, you are asking for an observation that would contradict evolutionary theory.

So no, I can't provide it, and if I could it would contradict evolution. Capich?

Micah wrote:Also, back to ERV's, the arguement about ERV's and correct me if 'm wrong, is that they are evidence for common ancestry because they are found the same place in the genome, and the probability of such by chance is impossible. Well, I showed you several examples of where ERV's are not in the genome at all when they should be, in simple terms, could you tell me why they are not in the genome?


You showed me one, and I already did. Reading fail?
Pope Rat: "Exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."

Squawk response: "O Rly?"
Thu Nov 04, 2010 11:34 am
micah1116Posts: 58Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2010 2:12 am Gender: Male

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

Because if you can't provide an example of a structure that exists that can't be explained then what you're asking for is a structure that is not present in the real world. Since evolutionary theory is an explanation of the real world that would not be a part of evolutionary theory.

So, name your structure, and I'll show you how it evolved. Fail to name it, and we'll know for certain you are arguing a straw man. You tried once, with the birds wing. You failed. Try again and fail again, or concede the point.


I don't think you are understanding what I said. I want an example of a new structure that arises in a species that was not present before. I'm not interested in how you think something evolved. If you can show me that new structures do indeed evolve, THEN we can talk about how you think the others evolved. The reason you are avoiding such a simple question, is because you know that it shows that evolution is not science, it's nothing but a package of assumptions.

The hypothesis is that the birds evolved from thoropod dinosaurs (it's a theory now, but I'll call it a hypothesis before mentioning the evidence). You stated that a new structure would have to form, the wing. When we look at a modern birds wing and the bone structure of a thoropod dinosaur, we find that your assertion of a new structure is bullshit. We find that small variation in shape and size (which you have already alluded to accepting) is perfectly sufficient to get from one to the other.

To establish how long such a small amount of variation actually took we just look to the fossil record. Since I have no doubt you won't read anything I present I'll just link to a website that you have already used (badly) as a reference, which mentions some of the intermediate forms between thoropod dinos and modern birds. Dating of the strata in which these fossils are found gives us a good indication of how long certain transitions took. Of course new fossils might revise time scales, there was a discovery just last year that revolutionized tertrapod evolution, pushing it back by several million years, the same could happen for birds.

http://www.talkorigins.org/indexcc/CC/CC214.html

Of course we can then talk about atavism in birds if you like, the old favourite of a chicken with teeth, but I doubt it's necessary.
First I must address your claim that chickens sometimes have teeth. From what I've seen they are ridges, not teeth, but if chickens did have the genes for teeth, this is no problem for creation, losing something isn't evolution, turning genes on and off isn't evolution. Here's some info taken from detecting design, it's in PDF form and I can't past the link for some reason:

"What I'm suggesting here is that the original bird ancestors already had the genes for making teeth, long tail vertebrae, scales, and the informational complexity for feathers (modern birds have all of this genetic information). The question now is, do reptiles have this information?

Consider that taking a bird gene pool that already contains the genes for both scales and feathers to produce a bird that has feathers where it usually grows scales, or visa versa, is no big deal. Every single cell of that creature has all the genes. Getting it to help grow either scales or feathers is just a matter of turning on the right set of genes. What the scientists interviewed in the Discovery program did was to flip a very simple chemical switch (retinoic acid / Vitamin A in this case) to turn on the desired set of genes for either scales or feathers. That's easy.

The problem is that this very interesting demonstration does not support the hypothesis that creatures that never did have the genes for feathers to begin with could produce feathers by flipping the same informationally simple chemical switch. If, for example, these scientists were able to get an iguana to grow feathers using the same Vitamin A switch that they used in chickens, that would be much more interesting. But, starting with a chicken, known to have genes for both scales and feathers, and getting it to grow feathers or scales in different places is pretty lame beyond a technical level of laboratory interest - to be honest. It really doesn't say anything important or interesting about how to go the other way around and get complex feathers from simple scales without the genes for feathers already being there.

At this stage we should be feeling uneasy about the idea that a simple chemical like vitamin A, containing a relatively small amount of 'information', could cause such an ordered structure to arise all by itself. And, of course, it doesn't. The scientists have already told us that their experiments were done on chicken embryos, which already have the information coding for feather construction. The simple chemical (Vitamin A) was only used as a simple 'switch' or 'trigger' during embryonic development to turn on the true complexity of the set of genes needed to code for feather development.

Now, if a clever genetic engineer were to splice out the information coding for feather construction from a chicken embryo, and splice it into a iguana embryo to cause it to grow feathers, this would confirm my point , that is, such complex information at such a high level cannot arise via the evolutionary mechanism of random mutation and natural selection. It has to be deliberately created or transferred from a preexisting source of high-level information.

Exactly the same thing is true for the other features mentioned in the program - to include the genes for the longer tail vertebrae and the teeth. These already exist in the chicken. Try getting them to evolve in a creature than never had these genes to begin with. That's a whole different ballgame. "



Secondly, lets look at your claim that dinosaurs evolved into birds.

http://creation.com/refuting-evolution- ... -evolution

I'll address your talk origins link, your trying to give me a list of fossils you think are transitions and if I don't spend two hours refuting each one, then you'll claim victory, which is a common tactic, but If I must, I will atleast address a few.

Sinosauropteryx prima:

http://creation.com/images/pdfs/tj/j21_ ... _11-12.pdf

Archaeopteryx:

http://creation.com/archaeopteryx-unlik ... ssing-link

You showed me one, and I already did. Reading fail?
[So no, I can't provide it, and if I could it would contradict evolution. Capich?

[

You showed me one, and I already did. Reading fail?


I am a bit confused by your previous posts, so if you would, please tell me in a paragraph or less why certain ERV's are in the genome, and other are not, so I can see exactly what your point is and don't have to sort through dozens of different links that don't get to the point.
Fri Nov 05, 2010 3:14 am
SquawkModeratorUser avatarPosts: 2011Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:25 pm Gender: Tree

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

micah1116 wrote:
I don't think you are understanding what I said. I want an example of a new structure that arises in a species that was not present before. I'm not interested in how you think something evolved. If you can show me that new structures do indeed evolve, THEN we can talk about how you think the others evolved. The reason you are avoiding such a simple question, is because you know that it shows that evolution is not science, it's nothing but a package of assumptions.


I know exactly what you are asking for, and I answered it properly. Let me try it another way.

First, you have failed to define kind despite being asked, which makes me think that you will fail to do so completely. However, whatever definition of kind you would eventually come up with, I'm fairly confident that it would argue that acanthostega, humans and birds are not the same kind.

I further contend that no "new" morphological features, by your definition, are required for any evolutionary trajectory that passes from acanthostega to either the birds or the apes. That being the case I conclude that what you are asking for is not a part of evolutionary theory, and I am therefor ignoring it as a strawman.

That's precisely why I asked you for an example of a structure that you wished me to explain by which you thought couldn't have evolved. Either it is possible to get right from acanthostega to the birds and humans without such a structure arising, in which case you would have to concede that evolution of such magnitude can occur due to your own previous arguments, or such a structure has arisen and you will be able to highlight it for me and challenge me to explain it.

This is easy for you, if you're right. The problem, as I perceive it, is that you are asking for something akin to a crocoduck, for a transition between modern taxa. Tell me I'm wrong.

Micah wrote:First I must address your claim that chickens sometimes have teeth. From what I've seen they are ridges, not teeth, but if chickens did have the genes for teeth, this is no problem for creation

You mean it's not a problem for the proponents of creation, because they subscribe to the doctrine of "make shit up to fit our preconceived notions". Yeah, I agree, with a magic skydaddy of infinite power you can pretty much postulate anything. Like, for instance, the fact that humans are sometimes born with a tail, or with 7 fingers. Funny thing, though, that in every case of atavism the structure that forms has two things in common. One, it's always a structure that would have been lost sometime in the not too distant evolutionary past, and 2. It's never a structure not on the proposed evolutionary trajectory of the organism.

Funny thing for zeus to do, that, plant stuff in the genome to make it look like common descent... Just a quick article on nature on the subject, not particuarly intersted in presenting this properly
http://www.nature.com/scitable/topicpage/Atavism-Embryology-Development-and-Evolution-843?auTags=


Micah wrote: losing something isn't evolution,


Wrong wrong and thirce wrong. That you can make such a foolish statement indicates a profound misunderstanding of evolutionary theory. It might not fit the creationist straw man of evolutionary theory, but surely you're not foolish enough to be arguing against that?
Micah wrote: turning genes on and off isn't evolution.

How can you purport to have understood anything I, and indeed you, wrote about ERVs when you make such stupid statements as this?


Micah wrote:Here's some info taken from detecting design, it's in PDF form and I can't past the link for some reason:

"What I'm suggesting here is that the original bird ancestors already had the genes for making teeth, long tail vertebrae, scales, and the informational complexity for feathers (modern birds have all of this genetic information). The question now is, do reptiles have this information?

Consider that taking a bird gene pool that already contains the genes for both scales and feathers to produce a bird that has feathers where it usually grows scales, or visa versa, is no big deal. Every single cell of that creature has all the genes. Getting it to help grow either scales or feathers is just a matter of turning on the right set of genes. What the scientists interviewed in the Discovery program did was to flip a very simple chemical switch (retinoic acid / Vitamin A in this case) to turn on the desired set of genes for either scales or feathers. That's easy.

No, it's not easy, but I don't have a massive issue with the rest of this.

Micah wrote:The problem is that this very interesting demonstration does not support the hypothesis that creatures that never did have the genes for feathers to begin with could produce feathers by flipping the same informationally simple chemical switch.

That would be a problem for creation, not for evolution, since nobody is positing that they never did have the genes. The point is that they had the genes, genes that were switched off by a simple mutation (or small combination of them), but are able to be reactivated if that mutation is reversed.


Micah wrote: If, for example, these scientists were able to get an iguana to grow feathers using the same Vitamin A switch that they used in chickens, that would be much more interesting.

No shit, since the iguana never had feathers in it's evolutionary history (well, not that I'm aware of, I confess my knowledge on iguana evolution is scant).

Micah wrote: But, starting with a chicken, known to have genes for both scales and feathers, and getting it to grow feathers or scales in different places is pretty lame beyond a technical level of laboratory interest - to be honest. It really doesn't say anything important or interesting about how to go the other way around and get complex feathers from simple scales without the genes for feathers already being there.


Not very interesting? They dismiss it out of hand because they know just how important it is, and they hope that the gullible and credulous (that's you, Micah), will not have the intelligence to work out the significance of this.

Put simply. If a creature had a given trait in it's evolutionary past, a trait that has been switched off by a single mutation (or small set of mutations), then a reversal of that mutation can cause that trait to reexhibit. Exampls are, as has been pointed out, scales rather than feathers, teeth, tails on humans, extra fingers. It's yet more evidence of common ancestry. Taken on it's own, not exactly convincing, but indicitive. Taken with the collective of information, overwhelming.

Micah wrote:At this stage we should be feeling uneasy about the idea that a simple chemical like vitamin A, containing a relatively small amount of 'information', could cause such an ordered structure to arise all by itself.

Bullshit. You should be feeling uneasy because experiments such as these are yet more evidence of common ancestry that you're willing to ignore in favour of a sky daddy.

Micah wrote:And, of course, it doesn't. The scientists have already told us that their experiments were done on chicken embryos, which already have the information coding for feather construction. The simple chemical (Vitamin A) was only used as a simple 'switch' or 'trigger' during embryonic development to turn on the true complexity of the set of genes needed to code for feather development.

Now, if a clever genetic engineer were to splice out the information coding for feather construction from a chicken embryo, and splice it into a iguana embryo to cause it to grow feathers, this would confirm my point , that is, such complex information at such a high level cannot arise via the evolutionary mechanism of random mutation and natural selection. It has to be deliberately created or transferred from a preexisting source of high-level information.

Pure, undiluted, horseshit. Non-sequiter too. He's arguing here against the crocoduck, which is somewhat amusing I admit. Indeed he's pretty much making your argument about a new and fully formed structure arising in a new species overnight. Perhaps this was the source you were using. If so, abandon it now. He's also making my point for me, you'll recall my mention that a large scale mutation would almost certainly be fatal (I said deleterious) other than in the case of segmentation?

Micah wrote:Exactly the same thing is true for the other features mentioned in the program - to include the genes for the longer tail vertebrae and the teeth. These already exist in the chicken. Try getting them to evolve in a creature than never had these genes to begin with. That's a whole different ballgame. "

A whole different ballgame? Certainly is :D Amazing, that a creotard website purporting to destroy evolutionary theory succeeds in demolishing your own strawman of evolution (discussing the instantaneous arrival of big new features), but fits perfectly with the slow and steady progress that real evolutionary theory demands.


I'm just astounded at the bird evolution stuff, the idiocy blows my mind, so I'm going to ignore it unless you want to present an individual case in detail. Then I'll show you up for the, what, 50th time so far in this debate?

Micah wrote:I am a bit confused by your previous posts, so if you would, please tell me in a paragraph or less why certain ERV's are in the genome, and other are not, so I can see exactly what your point is and don't have to sort through dozens of different links that don't get to the point.

If you'd shown any willingness to accept that you have been wrong, on any individual point, I might bother taking the trouble to repeat myself for the 5th time in the hope of getting through.

As it is I propose that this is simply a waste of time, I've explained it in detail, I've explained it in a single paragraph, I've gone over papers that dissected your objections. If you really do have a genuine interest, if there is some hope that you might actually be coming around to the weight of evidence against you, then I'll have yet one more go. But as of right now I'm just inclined to say that this is a debate, this is ground that has been covered multiple times and it serves no purpose to repeat myself.
Pope Rat: "Exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."

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Fri Nov 05, 2010 1:01 pm
micah1116Posts: 58Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2010 2:12 am Gender: Male

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

I know exactly what you are asking for, and I answered it properly. Let me try it another way.

First, you have failed to define kind despite being asked, which makes me think that you will fail to do so completely. However, whatever definition of kind you would eventually come up with, I'm fairly confident that it would argue that acanthostega, humans and birds are not the same kind.

I further contend that no "new" morphological features, by your definition, are required for any evolutionary trajectory that passes from acanthostega to either the birds or the apes. That being the case I conclude that what you are asking for is not a part of evolutionary theory, and I am therefor ignoring it as a strawman.

That's precisely why I asked you for an example of a structure that you wished me to explain by which you thought couldn't have evolved. Either it is possible to get right from acanthostega to the birds and humans without such a structure arising, in which case you would have to concede that evolution of such magnitude can occur due to your own previous arguments, or such a structure has arisen and you will be able to highlight it for me and challenge me to explain it.

This is easy for you, if you're right. The problem, as I perceive it, is that you are asking for something akin to a crocoduck, for a transition between modern taxa. Tell me I'm wrong.


I'll define kind, I guess I forgot about it. Kind is based on morphology. For example wolves and dogs are the same kind, they all have the exact same structures, and have all the same bones in the same locations, and the same number of bones.

Where are these transitions showing the number of bones increasing and decreasing in each phylum of life? A fossil is nothing more than the actual structure of the organism. If evolution occured, the fossils that would show step by step, bone by bone evolution, would outnumber the normal fossils. 99% of fossils should show this type of progression, how come none do? Instead evolutionists will show a fossils of an organism that shares characteristics of another type of organism, such as birds having teeth or claws, and proclaim it's a transitional form. Where's the progression? Where are all the other fossils showing it acquiring these new structures?

You mean it's not a problem for the proponents of creation, because they subscribe to the doctrine of "make shit up to fit our preconceived notions". Yeah, I agree, with a magic skydaddy of infinite power you can pretty much postulate anything. Like, for instance, the fact that humans are sometimes born with a tail, or with 7 fingers. Funny thing, though, that in every case of atavism the structure that forms has two things in common. One, it's always a structure that would have been lost sometime in the not too distant evolutionary past, and 2. It's never a structure not on the proposed evolutionary trajectory of the organism.

Funny thing for zeus to do, that, plant stuff in the genome to make it look like common descent... Just a quick article on nature on the subject, not particuarly intersted in presenting this properly
http://www.nature.com/scitable/topicpag ... 43?auTags=


First, humans are NEVER born with tails, do you know what spinal bifida is? This just shows how desperate evolutionists are to get people to believe we are related to chimp like ancestors. Here's an abstract taken from: http://content.karger.com/ProdukteDB/pr ... tNr=224273

It states:

"The human tail is rarely reported and is usually associated with underlying spina bifida occulta. A male newborn presenting a caudal appendage (human tail) with skin-covered myelomeningocele and tethered cord is described. Surgical excision of the human tail and repair of the myelomeningocele were performed 3 days after birth. After the operation, the patient had an uneventful convalescence and received follow-up at our outpatient clinic without any neurological sequelae. To our knowledge, no similar case report exists in the literature. Like other skin-related lesions in the lumbosacral area, the present case of caudal appendage with myelomeningocele is only a cutaneous sign of underlying spinal dysraphism since the skin and nerve system are related by their similar ectodermal origin. After excision of the tail and repair of an underlying lesion, long-term follow-up of the neurological status is warranted."

Next, you apparently didn't even read the article you provided, it states:

"As a result, toothlike structures grew, and other tooth markers were expressed (Chen et al., 2000). These findings were artificial in the sense that the prompting signal was experimentally administered; nonetheless, they were significant in showing that a chicken's jaw could produce teeth if specific conditions were present."

They were tooth like structures, not teeth, they are simply ridges, not teeth, why not just show me a picture of a chicken with teeth? Because they don't, they just have ridges on their beaks.

Here's some more evolutionist psuedoscience, the article states:

"In order to understand this error, it's first important to note that all humans briefly possess tails while in the uterus."

This is total nonsense. I'd really like for you to provide some evidence for this.

Why is it so difficult for you to tell me in one paragraph why ERV's are evidence for common ancestry, are you afraid that if you do so, you won't be able to try and confuse me, and I might be able to nail down exactly what your point is? It defintely appears that way. Either tell me in one paragraph exactly why ERV's are evidence for common ancestry, or I'm going to assume you don't have a reason.
Sat Nov 06, 2010 7:58 am
SquawkModeratorUser avatarPosts: 2011Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:25 pm Gender: Tree

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

micah1116 wrote:
I know exactly what you are asking for, and I answered it properly. Let me try it another way.

First, you have failed to define kind despite being asked, which makes me think that you will fail to do so completely. However, whatever definition of kind you would eventually come up with, I'm fairly confident that it would argue that acanthostega, humans and birds are not the same kind.

I further contend that no "new" morphological features, by your definition, are required for any evolutionary trajectory that passes from acanthostega to either the birds or the apes. That being the case I conclude that what you are asking for is not a part of evolutionary theory, and I am therefor ignoring it as a straw man.

That's precisely why I asked you for an example of a structure that you wished me to explain by which you thought couldn't have evolved. Either it is possible to get right from acanthostega to the birds and humans without such a structure arising, in which case you would have to concede that evolution of such magnitude can occur due to your own previous arguments, or such a structure has arisen and you will be able to highlight it for me and challenge me to explain it.

This is easy for you, if you're right. The problem, as I perceive it, is that you are asking for something akin to a crocoduck, for a transition between modern taxa. Tell me I'm wrong.


I'll define kind, I guess I forgot about it. Kind is based on morphology. For example wolves and dogs are the same kind, they all have the exact same structures, and have all the same bones in the same locations, and the same number of bones.


I asked for a definition of kind, and instead you tell me what "kind" is based on. Ok let's go with that. Could you tell me then if the manx cat is part of the cat kind? To head off your first objection here I'm simply going to mention heterozygous advantage and see if you walk into that trap.

How about polydactylous individuals, where do they fit into this definition of kind? Polydactylous cats are prevalent in the US in particular and the genes for polydactylism is certainly not deleterious, so are they a new kind? If so, how can they breed with another kind?

Micah wrote:Where are these transitions showing the number of bones increasing and decreasing in each phylum of life?

Lets make a quick diversion and head to the snakes. Now, are snakes a kind, or are they not? A quick google reveals that snakes can have anything between 100 and 400 pairs of ribs. So, can you narrow down this definition a bit, I'd like to be able to differentiate the snakes, to be able to tell which kind each snake belongs to. Unless that is, you prefer to allow all snakes to be a kind and we can rework your definition.

If that is the case then we'll head on back to polydactylous cat as a great example of how a new mutation can add or remove bones. I shall now await the goal post shift.

Micah wrote:A fossil is nothing more than the actual structure of the organism. If evolution occured, the fossils that would show step by step, bone by bone evolution

Can you identify for me two fossils in the fossil record that are considered to be consecutive (ie, no intermediate fossils currently known, and ignoring the fact that that isn't actually how the fossil record works exactly), and show me which structures are lacking. I'd like an actual example of the gaps that you say exist. Presumably you have countless examples like this you can reel off since you're so sure these gaps exist. So, name such a gap and we can have a proper look at it.

Micah wrote:would outnumber the normal fossils. 99% of fossils should show this type of progression, how come none do?

Grounds for this ridiculous assertion? Having already used punctuated equilibrium you are no doubt aware of how fast evolutionary change is. Perhaps now you will divulge the rate at which fossilization occurs. We don't have fossils for every species, not even close, IIRC the figure is something like 1 fossil for 80% of all genera (I'll go get actual figures if you wish to contest that) so I propose that you have plucked this 99% figure out of thin air in the hope that such an assertion would make your point. Back it up, why would we expect 99% of fossils to show that type of progression? How would it manifest in the fossil record? You'll have to present an example of a gap such as the one I asked for earlier before you get to this bit, so I suggest you focus efforts on that.

Micah wrote:Instead evolutionists will show a fossils of an organism that shares characteristics of another type of organism, such as birds having teeth or claws, and proclaim it's a transitional form.

This sentence doesn't make much sense, it would seem to be an amalgamation of the evidence provided by the fossil record and atavism. Could you restate it please so I understand your point.

Micah wrote: Where's the progression? Where are all the other fossils showing it acquiring these new structures?

Again, point to any two fossils in the record that are considered to be consecutive (or close to) and highlight the problem for me please. With nearly a billion fossils to choose from I'd find it hard to know where to start unless you can present a specific objection. I offered up early tetrapod to birds earlier, which is hardly a short range transition, and you didn't jump on it. Got something else in mind?

Micah wrote:
Squawk wrote:Like, for instance, the fact that humans are sometimes born with a tail, or with 7 fingers.


First, humans are NEVER born with tails, do you know what spinal bifida is? This just shows how desperate evolutionists are to get people to believe we are related to chimp like ancestors. Here's an abstract taken from: http://content.karger.com/ProdukteDB/pr ... ktNr=22427

It states:

"The human tail is rarely reported and is usually associated with underlying spina bifida occulta. A male newborn presenting a caudal appendage (human tail) with skin-covered myelomeningocele and tethered cord is described. Surgical excision of the human tail and repair of the myelomeningocele were performed 3 days after birth. After the operation, the patient had an uneventful convalescence and received follow-up at our outpatient clinic without any neurological sequelae. To our knowledge, no similar case report exists in the literature. Like other skin-related lesions in the lumbosacral area, the present case of caudal appendage with myelomeningocele is only a cutaneous sign of underlying spinal dysraphism since the skin and nerve system are related by their similar ectodermal origin. After excision of the tail and repair of an underlying lesion, long-term follow-up of the neurological status is warranted."


Had to laugh. First, you tell me "humans are never born with tails", before linking me to an article discussing a particular medical condition, in this instance a particularly unique and unfortunate illness for this individual. Did you even bother to google "atavism human tail"? Of course you didn't, because if you had you would have been presented with a plethora of information regarding the subject at hand rather than going off topic.

Lets start with the page on talkorigins.
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc/section2.html#atavisms_ex2

Now that particular page flattens your fallacious assertions so concisely and thoroughly that I'm inclined to leave it there, unless you have any specific objections to this particular atavistic occurrence. In particular it contains links to numerous studies of instances of human tails, notes the distinction between a true tail and a pseudo-tail and highlights numerous specific instances of genuine tail growth in humans, even describing one case where the tail was inherited over 3 generations. I think we'll consider that little falsehood of yours carpet bombed, so lets move on.

Micah wrote:Next, you apparently didn't even read the article you provided, it states:

"As a result, toothlike structures grew, and other tooth markers were expressed (Chen et al., 2000). These findings were artificial in the sense that the prompting signal was experimentally administered; nonetheless, they were significant in showing that a chicken's jaw could produce teeth if specific conditions were present."

They were tooth like structures, not teeth, they are simply ridges, not teeth, why not just show me a picture of a chicken with teeth? Because they don't, they just have ridges on their beaks.


Of course I read it. I've read and understood everything I've so far presented, including the consequences for evolutionary theory for each page/paper. The information revealed by the study promoting tooth growth in chickens is a great piece of evidence. What were you expecting, chicken with dinosaur teeth? 100 odd million years of separation and you expect a point mutation to result in fully formed teeth, or the application of certain substances (a vitamin compound IIRC, haven't re-read it) to initiate growth of full teeth? No matter, if this particular example is too subtle we can just continue with the human tail which I'm sure you now accept having read some of the links on the talkorigins site.

Micah wrote:Here's some more evolutionist psuedoscience, the article states:

"In order to understand this error, it's first important to note that all humans briefly possess tails while in the uterus."

This is total nonsense. I'd really like for you to provide some evidence for this.


Fine
You could start on talk origins again at http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc ... togeny_ex4, which is where I started, and then read the articles that it links to.
Lets start with this one
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/677043?dopt=Abstract
Evidence of a role for cell death in the disappearance of the embryonic human tail.
Fallon JF, Simandl BK.

Abstract wrote:The development and disappearance of the human tail between stages 14 and 22 were studied using scanning and transmission electron microscopy, supravital staining and light microscopy. The tail is a prominent feature of the human embryo during stage 14 and is composed of paired somites, mesenchyme and extensions of the neural tube, notochord and gut. The tail grows with the embryo through early stage 17 when it extends more than a millimeter from the trunk. Overgrowth by the trunk at the base of the tail may account for the loss of part of its length during late stage 17 and stage 18. However, during stage 17 cells begin to die in all structures throughout the tail. Cell death continues in the succeeding stages reaching massive numbers by stages 18 and 19, and the tail becomes less and less prominent with developmental time. Most of the dead cells are phagocytosed. The debris-laden macrophages appear to migrate from the tail to the body. By late stage 21 or early stage 22 there is no free tail. We conclude that cell death has a major role in the destruction of tail structures and the concurrent loss of the human tail.


And then lets go to the photographs and videos at
http://embryo.soad.umich.edu/index.html

Total nonsense, is it?


Micah wrote:Why is it so difficult for you to tell me in one paragraph why ERV's are evidence for common ancestry

It isn't, I've already done it, and your continued lack of reading comprehension is indicative of a closed mind that can't see the evidence presented. Let me provide a link for you

http://forums.leagueofreason.co.uk/viewtopic.php?p=87912#p87912
And then let me quote for you exactly what I stated

Squawk wrote:A short paragraph? The pages and pages already presented don't suffice? Fine. Construction of phylogenies based on orthologous ERVs found within genomes of organisms previously thought to be related confirm the pattern of divergence previously established via independent means. ERVs supply independent corroborative evidence. Understood?


Now, what are we to make of this? Did you not read it the first time? Not understand it? What possible motive could you have for asking for something that you have already been provided with?


Micah wrote:, are you afraid that if you do so, you won't be able to try and confuse me, and I might be able to nail down exactly what your point is? It defintely appears that way. Either tell me in one paragraph exactly why ERV's are evidence for common ancestry, or I'm going to assume you don't have a reason.


Already done it, either you failed to read it or you failed to understand it. Either way, your hubris here is amusing.
Pope Rat: "Exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."

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Sun Nov 07, 2010 11:38 pm
micah1116Posts: 58Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2010 2:12 am Gender: Male

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

First, I just spent over an hour writing a very lengthy response, and when I submitted it, it said I was a participant in the debate or something like that and I lost the entire post I worked on! I'm really angry about it! Do you know what might have happened squawk? With that being said, I'll have to rewrite my response, and pray that doesn't happen again.


I asked for a definition of kind, and instead you tell me what "kind" is based on. Ok let's go with that. Could you tell me then if the manx cat is part of the cat kind? To head off your first objection here I'm simply going to mention heterozygous advantage and see if you walk into that trap.

How about polydactylous individuals, where do they fit into this definition of kind? Polydactylous cats are prevalent in the US in particular and the genes for polydactylism is certainly not deleterious, so are they a new kind? If so, how can they breed with another kind?


God created more than one kind of cat, lizard snake, etc. I do not say that all lizards are related for example.

Lets make a quick diversion and head to the snakes. Now, are snakes a kind, or are they not? A quick google reveals that snakes can have anything between 100 and 400 pairs of ribs. So, can you narrow down this definition a bit, I'd like to be able to differentiate the snakes, to be able to tell which kind each snake belongs to. Unless that is, you prefer to allow all snakes to be a kind and we can rework your definition.

If that is the case then we'll head on back to polydactylous cat as a great example of how a new mutation can add or remove bones. I shall now await the goal post shift.


As I just stated, there are more than one kind of snake, not all snakes are related. God created many different snakes.

Can you identify for me two fossils in the fossil record that are considered to be consecutive (ie, no intermediate fossils currently known, and ignoring the fact that that isn't actually how the fossil record works exactly), and show me which structures are lacking. I'd like an actual example of the gaps that you say exist. Presumably you have countless examples like this you can reel off since you're so sure these gaps exist. So, name such a gap and we can have a proper look at it.


The entire fossil record is a gap, that's the problem. Show me two fossils that are exactly the same except for a new structure.

Had to laugh. First, you tell me "humans are never born with tails", before linking me to an article discussing a particular medical condition, in this instance a particularly unique and unfortunate illness for this individual. Did you even bother to google "atavism human tail"? Of course you didn't, because if you had you would have been presented with a plethora of information regarding the subject at hand rather than going off topic.

Lets start with the page on talkorigins.
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/comdesc ... avisms_ex2

Now that particular page flattens your fallacious assertions so concisely and thoroughly that I'm inclined to leave it there, unless you have any specific objections to this particular atavistic occurrence. In particular it contains links to numerous studies of instances of human tails, notes the distinction between a true tail and a pseudo-tail and highlights numerous specific instances of genuine tail growth in humans, even describing one case where the tail was inherited over 3 generations. I think we'll consider that little falsehood of yours carpet bombed, so lets move on.


If you would actually do some research, and not just blindly believe what talk idiots tells you, you might actually learn something. The picture of the girl with a tail, is nothing of the sort, it's a spinal disorder called spinal dysraphism. If you google the term, you will find hundreds of links that prove my point, here is one such link:

http://www.jpedsurg.org/article/S0022-3468(08)00426-0/abstract

It states: "Human tail or tail-like caudal cutaneous appendage is a rare fingerlike, midline protrusion at the lumbosacrococcygeal region, often associated with occult spinal dysraphism."

This is what evotards continually do, they twist real science.

And then lets go to the photographs and videos at
http://embryo.soad.umich.edu/index.html

Total nonsense, is it?


Yes, it is total nonsense, I'm really going to make you look like a goon on this one. Just as I stated a few seconds ago, evotards twist real science, lets see how dishonest evolutionists are.

The supposed tail in the picure of the embryo you showed, is not a a tail at all, it's the spine.

http://www.deathroe.com/baby_developmen ... cfm#month2

It states:

"At this stage, the embryo is the size of a raisin. The neural tube enlarges into three parts, soon to become a very complex brain. The placenta begins functioning. The spine and spinal cord grows faster than the rest of the body at this stage and give the appearance of a tail. This disappears as the child continues to grow."

See how dishonest evolutionists are. My first response was much more lengthy and even further debunked your claims, but I think I've already made you look like a fool.
Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:14 am
SquawkModeratorUser avatarPosts: 2011Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:25 pm Gender: Tree

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

Mod Note:

I've discussed the issue of the disappearing post with Micah via pm and subsequently with CosmicSpork. The best we can come up with is an expiring session, since the only way it's possible to hit reply in a debate thread in the first place is to be named as a participant.

Nothing can be done to retrieve it unless it's stored locally in your browser etc since it never hit the LoR server.
Pope Rat: "Exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."

Squawk response: "O Rly?"
Mon Nov 08, 2010 6:07 pm
SquawkModeratorUser avatarPosts: 2011Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:25 pm Gender: Tree

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

micah1116 wrote:God created more than one kind of cat, lizard snake, etc. I do not say that all lizards are related for example.

micah1116 wrote:As I just stated, there are more than one kind of snake, not all snakes are related. God created many different snakes.


Just, fucking, brilliant. So you have no clue what a kind is, you could have just said.

Micah wrote:The entire fossil record is a gap, that's the problem. Show me two fossils that are exactly the same except for a new structure.

Two points.
1. You completely failed to provide the example I asked for
2. Why would I bother with fossils when I just provided you with extant populations that, by your definition, are in different kinds, that can interbreed, and in which we can actually observe the new structures. In case you missed it the first time we'll go with polydactylous cats.



micah1116 wrote:If you would actually do some research, and not just blindly believe what talk idiots tells you, you might actually learn something.

Ahh, talkorigins referred to as talkidiots. Grounds for dismissing them as a source? I freely admit it's not peer reviewed writing, which is why I said I'd present one of the papers on which their information is based if you have a specific issue. You do have a specific issue, but it's not with talkorigins. Your specific issue is a complete failure to comprehend what you are reading.

Micah wrote:The picture of the girl with a tail, is nothing of the sort, it's a spinal disorder called spinal dysraphism. If you google the term, you will find hundreds of links that prove my point, here is one such link:

http://www.jpedsurg.org/article/S0022-3468(08)00426-0/abstract

It states: "Human tail or tail-like caudal cutaneous appendage is a rare fingerlike, midline protrusion at the lumbosacrococcygeal region, often associated with occult spinal dysraphism."

This is what evotards continually do, they twist real science.


First up, we note that this is a quote mine. Why don't we read the full text from the abstract (I'm not paying for the full article).

Paper wrote:Human tail or tail-like caudal cutaneous appendage is a rare fingerlike, midline protrusion at the lumbosacrococcygeal region, often associated with occult spinal dysraphism. A 2-month-old male child presented here had a lumbosacral tail-like appendage with underlying spinal dysraphism without any appreciable neurological deficit. In contradiction to a previous report, true vestigial tails are not benign because they may be associated with underlying dysraphic state. About 50% of the cases were associated with either meningocele or spina bifida occulta. Management of such lesions must include complete neurological history and examination as well as magnetic resonance or computed tomographic imaging. After diagnosis, microsurgery should be performed if there is any intraspinal component to avoid any damage and neurological deficit.


I've highlighted an important part of it, mostly because I find it amusing that your own source refutes your earlier claim. Why don't you explain to me why this paper has any impact on human vestiges?

Essentially you are taking two different medical conditions and equating them in an effort to distract the casual reader. I won't allow you to do this. It is intentionally dishonest and I won't fall short of flat out calling you a liar here. The image reproduced on the talkorigins website is taken from a paper that is free to read. You can download it at

http://web.jbjs.org.uk/cgi/reprint/62-B/4/508.pdf
J Bone Joint Surg Br. 1980 Nov;62-B(4):508-10.
Human tails.
Bar-Maor JA, Kesner KM, Kaftori JK.

If you had bothered to read that paper you would note that the X-ray photo presented on talk origins is one of two similar cases presented in that paper (along with a third of a different nature) that are nothing like the condition you keep trying to equate them with. In particular the tails in those cases have distinct bones.

Which actually brings up another interesting point, are these people a different kind? Just something to chuckle over.

Micah wrote:
And then lets go to the photographs and videos at
http://embryo.soad.umich.edu/index.html

Total nonsense, is it?


Yes, it is total nonsense, I'm really going to make you look like a goon on this one.

Your strike rate is particularly low even for a creationist, what with the lack of reading comprehension and all, so I'll remain skeptical. Perhaps you should get some of your fellow terminally credulous to look at this "debate" and see just how much of a goon you are making of me

Micah wrote: Just as I stated a few seconds ago, evotards twist real science, lets see how dishonest evolutionists are.

Evotards, eh. This particular evotard has exposed your lies, deceit, ignorance and generally inadequacy in this debate time and time again, noted your inability to use simple forum functions (like quotes), constant goal post shifts, logical fallacies galore and generally owned you on every point raised so far. What does that make you?

Micah wrote:The supposed tail in the picure of the embryo you showed, is not a a tail at all, it's the spine.


And a tail is what? Why don't you enlighten us?
You no doubt ignored the paper I presented in my last post, as you have every other one, but I did choose it for a reason. Maybe you will remember it. It was this link
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/677043?dopt=Abstract

Which discussed the arising and subsequent absorption of the human tail during embryonic development. Quite amusingly the paper I linked to a few moments ago (the one from which that X-ray is taken) also discussed the disappearance of the tail in development. Given that you claim to be able to dismiss that paper so trivially as a different medical condition you have no doubt read that paper and thus, even if correct about the tail being a spinal abnormality (you're not), should once again admit to your previous error concerning the tail in human fetal development. You of course won't, however, which is just one more reason you're losing.

Micah wrote:See how dishonest evolutionists are. My first response was much more lengthy and even further debunked your claims, but I think I've already made you look like a fool.


Of course you have ;-)
Pope Rat: "Exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."

Squawk response: "O Rly?"
Mon Nov 08, 2010 7:04 pm
micah1116Posts: 58Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2010 2:12 am Gender: Male

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

Just, fucking, brilliant. So you have no clue what a kind is, you could have just said.


No, I told you exactly what a kind is, it's based on morphology. An anaconda and a garden snake aren't related, just as a love bird and a parrot aren't related. It would be like saying that all fish are related, which is ofcourse what you believe. There are basic general families of life. Have you ever seen an anaconda and a garden snake interbreed? No, they are different kinds. Yes, they are both snakes, but they aren't related.

Two points.
1. You completely failed to provide the example I asked for
2. Why would I bother with fossils when I just provided you with extant populations that, by your definition, are in different kinds, that can interbreed, and in which we can actually observe the new structures. In case you missed it the first time we'll go with polydactylous cats.


Sure, here's one I'm sure no one has ever asked for. Show me a transition between a male and a female, pick any species you like.

I also ask to you show me a tranitional form that fits the description of what a transiontal fossil is between fish and amphibian tetrapods. At this point I'm sure you'll show me the same chart that proteus did, which if you do, will show me that you don't have a clue what a transitional form is.

Your second statement is a false assumption. Do you know that all fish are related, all cats, all snakes, all birds? You see, your assuming they are all related, because in this modern day we call them the same kind or family of life. So in other words, they are related because I say so, we didn't observe these new structures arise, you have no mechanism by which it can possibly happen. Stick to science, not assumption. If we can observe these new structures, give me one example of when we have observed one of these new structures evolving, since you claim these do indeed exist.

First up, we note that this is a quote mine. Why don't we read the full text from the abstract (I'm not paying for the full article).


Quote mine? Are you joking? I quoted the article and gave you a link to the article, can't you read? I was not aware that you had to pay to read the article, I didn't. This is just silly.

I've highlighted an important part of it, mostly because I find it amusing that your own source refutes your earlier claim. Why don't you explain to me why this paper has any impact on human vestiges?

Essentially you are taking two different medical conditions and equating them in an effort to distract the casual reader. I won't allow you to do this. It is intentionally dishonest and I won't fall short of flat out calling you a liar here. The image reproduced on the talkorigins website is taken from a paper that is free to read. You can download it at

http://web.jbjs.org.uk/cgi/reprint/62-B/4/508.pdf
J Bone Joint Surg Br. 1980 Nov;62-B(4):508-10.
Human tails.
Bar-Maor JA, Kesner KM, Kaftori JK.

If you had bothered to read that paper you would note that the X-ray photo presented on talk origins is one of two similar cases presented in that paper (along with a third of a different nature) that are nothing like the condition you keep trying to equate them with. In particular the tails in those cases have distinct bones.

Which actually brings up another interesting point, are these people a different kind? Just something to chuckle over.


Dishonest, the paper you linked me to, has the paper I gave you in the related articles section.

You just can't read can you? Read the section of the article you provided that is called "on human tails" And what does it say? It states the "tail" is caused by hypertrophy of the sacrococcygeal vertebrae. what does that mean? Here's the definition.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypertrophy

"hypertrophy is the increase in the volume of an organ or tissue due to the enlargement of its component cells"

So as I stated before, it's the spine not the tail. You last statement is implying that the tail is nothing more than a spine. So are you saying that a cats tail is really it's spine? So your saying that duplication of vertebrae will result in a functional tail? This is nonsense, just admit that talk origins is wrong.

And no they aren't a different kind. You remember how I said DNA recombination reverts the organism back to it's wild type within one to several generation even when deformities occur? Duplication of already existing vertebrae isn't evolution, it's the same as having 6 fingers.

And a tail is what? Why don't you enlighten us?
You no doubt ignored the paper I presented in my last post, as you have every other one, but I did choose it for a reason. Maybe you will remember it. It was this link
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/677043?dopt=Abstract

Which discussed the arising and subsequent absorption of the human tail during embryonic development. Quite amusingly the paper I linked to a few moments ago (the one from which that X-ray is taken) also discussed the disappearance of the tail in development. Given that you claim to be able to dismiss that paper so trivially as a different medical condition you have no doubt read that paper and thus, even if correct about the tail being a spinal abnormality (you're not), should once again admit to your previous error concerning the tail in human fetal development. You of course won't, however, which is just one more reason you're losing.


The paper you provided says there is development of the tail during different embyonic stages, I showed you how it is actually the spine that grows faster than the rest of the body, are vertebrae being lost? Does a tail grow and then the spinal vertabrae are lost? No, it's the spine, it just grows faster than the rest of the body. You can't seem to admit your wrong on this one.
Wed Nov 10, 2010 8:37 pm
SquawkModeratorUser avatarPosts: 2011Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:25 pm Gender: Tree

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

Mod Note.

Squawk has requested the use of his option to play his wildcard for a 2 week break between posts. Apparently his real life has become somewhat hectic at the moment. He says he may post within the normal posting time anyway, but wanted to get this formality out of the way


And since I have something of an inside line on Squawk I can attest this is true ;-)
Pope Rat: "Exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."

Squawk response: "O Rly?"
Tue Nov 16, 2010 6:49 pm
SquawkModeratorUser avatarPosts: 2011Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:25 pm Gender: Tree

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

micah1116 wrote:
Squawk wrote:Just, fucking, brilliant. So you have no clue what a kind is, you could have just said.

No, I told you exactly what a kind is, it's based on morphology.


That is now twice that you have told me what it is "based on". Your actual statement was

Micah wrote:"'ll define kind, I guess I forgot about it. Kind is based on morphology. For example wolves and dogs are the same kind, they all have the exact same structures, and have all the same bones in the same locations, and the same number of bones."


I pointed out polydactylous cats and manx cats. I mentioned manx cats because I expected you to mention that a cat homogonous for the manx gene suffers early death thus enabling a discussion on heterozygous advantage. I mentioned polydactylous cats because they are prevalent, because the genes evidently are not getting bred out and indeed are spreading, and because they refute entirely two of your assertions. I mentioned snakes for two reasons, partly because they provide a great example of segmentation and partly because I don't think you will be able to define a "kind" of snake that will allow me to differentiate one snake from another unless that definition is the same as my own definition of species.

Classification is notoriously difficult, species is the only taxonomic rank considered to be rigorously defined, and I pointed out that it has numerous problems, exemplified by ring species. Beyond species science has no classification that applies universally, and yet you presume that your definition of "it's based on morphology" will suffice. No, it won't, it can't and it fails.

Micah wrote: An anaconda and a garden snake aren't related, just as a love bird and a parrot aren't related. It would be like saying that all fish are related, which is ofcourse what you believe. There are basic general families of life.


Lets be clear, I believe all life is related, not just all fish, due to the tremendous volume of evidence that indicates it is true.

General families of life, as you put it, are presumably "kinds" by your definition. Are you now arguing that all snakes with identical skeletons are of the same kind, but those with differing skeletons (ie differring rib counts) are different kinds?

Do we have:
the 100 ribbed snake kind,
the 101 ribbed snake kind,
the 102 ribbed snake kind etc?

Are you going to tell me that all snakes with identical skeletons can interbreed?

Can you tell me how I differentiate between "kinds" of fish. I know perfectly well how to define a species of fish, how to highlight issues with the definition of species with fish and why such issues are to be expected from applying such a classification system. I contend that your only basis for classification is point and name.

Micah wrote: Have you ever seen an anaconda and a garden snake interbreed? No, they are different kinds. Yes, they are both snakes, but they aren't related.

Tell me how I can tell if they are the same kind or not. Thus far you've told me I differentiate snakes in two ways, first by bone count, and second by ability to interbreed. (same bone count required, ability to breed required).

Well, I already pointed out polydactylous cats to you, cats that have a different bone count to other cats and yet are still able to interbreed, so your definition of kind is either majorly flawed or needs to be corrected. You'll note, of course, that neither of these issues is a problem for the definition of species, or for evolutionary theory as a whole.

Micah wrote:
Squawk wrote:Two points.
1. You completely failed to provide the example I asked for
2. Why would I bother with fossils when I just provided you with extant populations that, by your definition, are in different kinds, that can interbreed, and in which we can actually observe the new structures. In case you missed it the first time we'll go with polydactylous cats.


Sure, here's one I'm sure no one has ever asked for. Show me a transition between a male and a female, pick any species you like.


Why?

Micah wrote:I also ask to you show me a tranitional form that fits the description of what a transiontal fossil is between fish and amphibian tetrapods. At this point I'm sure you'll show me the same chart that proteus did, which if you do, will show me that you don't have a clue what a transitional form is.


No I won't show you that chart, and no I won't answer this question, for two reasons. One, you're asking for a single fossil to represent a transition that has multiple intermediate stages. To provide an individual fossil to demonstrate such a transition is pretty much pointless since it would miss out various intermediate stages between intermediates (apologies for the tautology). This is like asking you to show me the point at which black becomes white in this image

Image

To further highlight this, an equivalent over a longer period of time would be to ask for a single transitional fossil mid point between an early rodent like mammal and humans. Taken on it's own it's not indicative.

I told you how not to be disingenuous about this, I pretty much predicted that you would ask for exactly what you have asked for. I further told you to be more specific. I told you to pick any two fossils purported by "evolutionists" to be consecutive in the fossil record and show how either contains structures that the one post or prior does not. Doing this should be trivial. You ask for a transitional fossil between fish and amphibious tetrapods. I challenge you to name any two consecutive fossils on that proposed route (think Acanthostega, Tiktaalik etc) and highlight any structure that could not have arisen.

Since you have the entire fossil record to go at there must be some gap, somewhere, that you think is too large to have happened. The issue is not the fossils, it's the gaps, so go find me a gap. Just name your fossils.

If you can't find two such fossils, consecutive in the record, that require such a change then it would seem obvious that the only possible reason is that such a gap does not exist and therefor does not require an explanation. So, find that gap.


Micah wrote:Your second statement is a false assumption. Do you know that all fish are related, all cats, all snakes, all birds?

A mountain of evidence says they are, and that is what this debate is all about. Identifying that evidence and picking holes in it, if they exist. The issue here would be one of assumed conclusions. Your assumed conclusion is that evolution cannot happen, and thus all evidence must be explained away or discounted. My assumed conclusion does not exist, I simply examine the evidence and, depending on what I find, form a conclusion or abandon a previously evidentially supported conclusion. Since I've examined evolutionary theory for a long time my conclusion right now is that evolutionary theory happens. Your job is to dissuade me, or our readers, of that notion.

By asking the question you did above you reveal that you don't even understand this basic point. You presume that I accept evolution on the same grounds that you accept Gods existence. I don't, and until you understand that you can't hope to understand my position, much less argue against it.

Micah wrote:You see, your assuming they are all related, because in this modern day we call them the same kind or family of life.

Wrong. I don't call them kinds. Kinds is a vacuous definition, imprecise in nature. It doesn't allow me to differentiate between individuals at all, it tells me nothing about interrelatedness. I'm still none the wiser about what a kind is, other than its "based on morphology". I am following the evidence that says they are related, the mountains of independent evidence that point in that direction.

Micah wrote: So in other words, they are related because I say so, we didn't observe these new structures arise, you have no mechanism by which it can possibly happen.

Which new structures? You're inventing stuff again, I never mentioned new structures in fish. Could you highlight a given structure, the basal form of the organism that didn't contain the structure, and then challenge me to show how it arose. Thus far you're only attempt at this has been the birds wing which was trivially refuted and subsequently ignored by you after it's refutation. All you have to do is show me two consecutive fossils in the record, a record that you claim is replete with gaps. Should be easy.

These organisms are not related "because I say so". There are numerous means by which we classify organisms. Comparative anatomy (which deals with your favourite subject, morphology) is of course the first and most obvious. Next would come geographical distribution, though that's of slightly lesser use when dealing with fish (not all fish though). Then we'd get to phylogenetic analysis and all the other great tools that genetics gives us. And of course, we have a well understood process of decent with inherited modification. Put them all together and out pop independently constructed congruent trees that indicate that all life on earth shares a common ancestor. You're supposed to be arguing the evidence, not erecting arguments from incredulity.

Micah wrote: Stick to science, not assumption.

I do

Micah wrote: If we can observe these new structures, give me one example of when we have observed one of these new structures evolving, since you claim these do indeed exist.


I think a point of clarification is needed here. A new structure arising in an individual is a mutation, not evolution. Evolution is a process that happens to populations, not to individuals. I can give you countless examples of individual mutations that result in new structures, I mentioned cancer earlier on to demonstrate this point.

After that I simply refer you back to my last post and Polydactylism.


Micah wrote:
Squawk wrote:First up, we note that this is a quote mine. Why don't we read the full text from the abstract (I'm not paying for the full article).


Quote mine? Are you joking? I quoted the article and gave you a link to the article, can't you read? I was not aware that you had to pay to read the article, I didn't. This is just silly.

No it's not silly, you only linked to the abstract. You are aware that the abstract is not the full paper? I've just been back and visited the site and tried to get the full article. There are three methods of doing so. You can either get the html version, the pdf version, or you can click to view the text on an alternative website which leads to sciencedirect (to which I do have a login).

In all cases payment is required to read that paper. If you do have the pdf perhaps you could host it somewhere so that I can download it. If you have the html perhaps you could quote some of the discussion section for us. Maybe someone else here could confirm this in the discussion thread, but I don't have access to the full paper.

And yes, it was a quote mine. You quoted your source, which was much of an improvement, and my quotation and highlight showed why it was a quote mine. Taken in isolation your quote seemed to support your position. When we read the entire abstract we note that it does not. Your only possible hope to win that particular point was if I didn't go and read the abstract in full. I did, and so I called you on the quote mine.

Micah wrote:
Squawk wrote:I've highlighted an important part of it, mostly because I find it amusing that your own source refutes your earlier claim. Why don't you explain to me why this paper has any impact on human vestiges?

Essentially you are taking two different medical conditions and equating them in an effort to distract the casual reader. I won't allow you to do this. It is intentionally dishonest and I won't fall short of flat out calling you a liar here. The image reproduced on the talkorigins website is taken from a paper that is free to read. You can download it at

http://web.jbjs.org.uk/cgi/reprint/62-B/4/508.pdf
J Bone Joint Surg Br. 1980 Nov;62-B(4):508-10.
Human tails.
Bar-Maor JA, Kesner KM, Kaftori JK.

If you had bothered to read that paper you would note that the X-ray photo presented on talk origins is one of two similar cases presented in that paper (along with a third of a different nature) that are nothing like the condition you keep trying to equate them with. In particular the tails in those cases have distinct bones.

Which actually brings up another interesting point, are these people a different kind? Just something to chuckle over.


Dishonest, the paper you linked me to, has the paper I gave you in the related articles section.

Where am I dishonest? Highlight any lie or retract this now.

Micah wrote:You just can't read can you? Read the section of the article you provided that is called "on human tails" And what does it say? It states the "tail" is caused by hypertrophy of the sacrococcygeal vertebrae. what does that mean? Here's the definition.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypertrophy

"hypertrophy is the increase in the volume of an organ or tissue due to the enlargement of its component cells"

So as I stated before, it's the spine not the tail.


You accuse me of being unable to read, and then demonstrate to the world that you are the one guilty of this error? The paper is not, at that point, discussing causes. It is discussing classification, classification according to a man named Bartel in 1883 (yes, 1883). A cause would be a stimulus that promotes such a growth. Here the authors of the paper are fitting these particular cases into bartels original system of classification.

Aside from the comprehension fail it would seem a bit of an anatomy lesson is in order. I presume you won't dispute that humans are vertebrates. Vertebrates are united by their vertebral column. The vertebral column is divided into sections. Quoting from the wiki page on vertebrates
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vertebrate

Wiki wrote:
    * Cervical: 7 vertebrae (C1-C7)
    * Thoracic: 12 vertebrae (T1-T12)
    * Lumbar: 5 vertebrae (L1-L5)
    * Sacral: 5 (fused) vertebrae (S1-S5)
    * Coccygeal: 4 (3-5) (fused) vertebrae (Tailbone)


To keep things consistent I'll refer here to cats and not in particular a very interesting part of the cats anatomy: The tail. Just what is a cats tail? We note that it has bones in it. In particular it has coccygeal vertebrae, and even more interestingly not always the same number. I'll next link to an image of an animal with a rather obvious structure for all to see, it demonstrates pretty well just what a tail is.

(nicked it off the wiki page I linked to a sec ago).
Image

When we look at the structure of the tail of any vertebrate what we find are Coccygeal Vertebrae that make up the tail, and what did that image I linked to demonstrate? The one off talk origins. Three well developed non-fused Coccygeal Vertebrae in a human infant. So I challenge you once again to tell me what a tail is and how this doesn't meet that definition.


Micah wrote: You last statement is implying that the tail is nothing more than a spine. So are you saying that a cats tail is really it's spine?

I'll leave you to work that out from what I posted above. I'm sure our avid readers have already worked it out.

Micah wrote:So your saying that duplication of vertebrae will result in a functional tail?

Nope.

Micah wrote:And no they aren't a different kind. You remember how I said DNA recombination reverts the organism back to it's wild type within one to several generation even when deformities occur?

I certainly do remember this. I remember asking you to cite sources to demonstrate how it would prevent gene fixation. Original post here


Micah wrote:Duplication of already existing vertebrae isn't evolution


Who said it was? Duplication of existing vertebrae is very likely just a mutation.
Pope Rat: "Exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."

Squawk response: "O Rly?"
Thu Nov 18, 2010 11:05 pm
micah1116Posts: 58Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2010 2:12 am Gender: Male

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

I pointed out polydactylous cats and manx cats. I mentioned manx cats because I expected you to mention that a cat homogonous for the manx gene suffers early death thus enabling a discussion on heterozygous advantage. I mentioned polydactylous cats because they are prevalent, because the genes evidently are not getting bred out and indeed are spreading, and because they refute entirely two of your assertions. I mentioned snakes for two reasons, partly because they provide a great example of segmentation and partly because I don't think you will be able to define a "kind" of snake that will allow me to differentiate one snake from another unless that definition is the same as my own definition of species.

Classification is notoriously difficult, species is the only taxonomic rank considered to be rigorously defined, and I pointed out that it has numerous problems, exemplified by ring species. Beyond species science has no classification that applies universally, and yet you presume that your definition of "it's based on morphology" will suffice. No, it won't, it can't and it fails.


Classification can be difficult, and really being able to say exactly what a kind of species is, isn't the most important thing, rather establishing whether ogansims can change structurally. It's simple though, look at a wolf and a domestic dog, they have all the same structures. An african wild cat and a domestic house cat also do, thus they are the same kind. I'm giving you a 100% observable definition of kind.

Lets be clear, I believe all life is related, not just all fish, due to the tremendous volume of evidence that indicates it is true.

General families of life, as you put it, are presumably "kinds" by your definition. Are you now arguing that all snakes with identical skeletons are of the same kind, but those with differing skeletons (ie differring rib counts) are different kinds?

Do we have:
the 100 ribbed snake kind,
the 101 ribbed snake kind,
the 102 ribbed snake kind etc?

Are you going to tell me that all snakes with identical skeletons can interbreed?

Can you tell me how I differentiate between "kinds" of fish. I know perfectly well how to define a species of fish, how to highlight issues with the definition of species with fish and why such issues are to be expected from applying such a classification system. I contend that your only basis for classification is point and name.


I have not personally researched snakes regarding this topic. I think that we do observe changes due to changes in the phenotype..

Can you show me an example of where a snake is gaining new sets of ribs? For example going from 100 to 102? I'm assuming that the longer the snake is, the more ribs it will have.

Tell me how I can tell if they are the same kind or not. Thus far you've told me I differentiate snakes in two ways, first by bone count, and second by ability to interbreed. (same bone count required, ability to breed required).

Well, I already pointed out polydactylous cats to you, cats that have a different bone count to other cats and yet are still able to interbreed, so your definition of kind is either majorly flawed or needs to be corrected. You'll note, of course, that neither of these issues is a problem for the definition of species, or for evolutionary theory as a whole.


I'm I'm not mistaken, is a polydactylous cat a cat with multiple toes? If so, that's not a new structure, duplicating an already existing structure isn't new, the genetic information was already present.

If a human was born with 6 fingers I wouldn't claim it was a new kind, nor would you claim it was a new species. Lets clarify something here, duplicating an already existing structure couldn't cause a fish to evolve into a new organism. I'm looking for an entirely new structure in the species.

To further highlight this, an equivalent over a longer period of time would be to ask for a single transitional fossil mid point between an early rodent like mammal and humans. Taken on it's own it's not indicative.

I told you how not to be disingenuous about this, I pretty much predicted that you would ask for exactly what you have asked for. I further told you to be more specific. I told you to pick any two fossils purported by "evolutionists" to be consecutive in the fossil record and show how either contains structures that the one post or prior does not. Doing this should be trivial. You ask for a transitional fossil between fish and amphibious tetrapods. I challenge you to name any two consecutive fossils on that proposed route (think Acanthostega, Tiktaalik etc) and highlight any structure that could not have arisen.

Since you have the entire fossil record to go at there must be some gap, somewhere, that you think is too large to have happened. The issue is not the fossils, it's the gaps, so go find me a gap. Just name your fossils.

If you can't find two such fossils, consecutive in the record, that require such a change then it would seem obvious that the only possible reason is that such a gap does not exist and therefor does not require an explanation. So, find that gap.


First, I'd like for you to show me a new structure arising, arranging fossils in an order that you think they evolved isn't science, nor logical. They show no progression at all.

I'll give you a lot to work with. Fish didn't evolve legs, show me a transition between any species of fish where it is acquiring legs.

When we look at the structure of the tail of any vertebrate what we find are Coccygeal Vertebrae that make up the tail, and what did that image I linked to demonstrate? The one off talk origins. Three well developed non-fused Coccygeal Vertebrae in a human infant. So I challenge you once again to tell me what a tail is and how this doesn't meet that definition.


So your saying that the tail is actually the spine where it grew to long in length? Your really grasping at straws here. You tried to say that humans had a tail in the embryo, when in fact it was the same spine we all have that grew faster than the rest of the body. The spine has a totally different function than a tail on any creature. For example, a cats tail aids it in balance and to portray emotions. The vertebrae in the tail are different from the vertebrae that make up the spine, they serve a totally different function.
Fri Nov 19, 2010 6:10 am
SquawkModeratorUser avatarPosts: 2011Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:25 pm Gender: Tree

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

micah wrote:Classification can be difficult, and really being able to say exactly what a kind of species is, isn't the most important thing

You have maintained throughout that the definition of kind has some weight, has some bearing of evolutionary theory. If you can't define kind, how am I supposed to give it any credence?

Thus far you've told me what it is based on, then provided examples. An example does not a definition make, especially in light of the fact that I have provided counter examples that show your definition is not rigorous. If you are going to make reference to kind then either define it properly or agree that you are being specious.

micah wrote:rather establishing whether ogansims can change structurally.


You keep asserting this which seems to imply that you think it has some bearing on evolutionary theory. Previous postings suggest you're asking for evidence of a new, non-derived structure, not a duplication or a variation on a previously existing structure.

This sets up a straw man. Evolutionary theory is an explanation of observations. If you can't show me an instance of the event you ask for actually happening, why would evolutionary theory have any requirement to explain it? I've now asked you multiple times to provide any two fossils in the fossil record, considered to be consecutive, that show such a novel structure arising.

The position you have taken seems to be "evolution says this should happen, but we don't see it". This is incorrect. Evolutionary theory looks at what we see, and then tries to explain it. To suggest that evolutionary theory must be able to account for this is to say that you have seen an instance of it. So, provide it. You tried earlier with the birds wing.

micah wrote:It's simple though, look at a wolf and a domestic dog, they have all the same structures. An african wild cat and a domestic house cat also do, thus they are the same kind. I'm giving you a 100% observable definition of kind.


Again you are giving me examples of organisms that you consider to be of the same kind. This is like me showing you a picture of a rabbit and another picture of a tiger and concluding that I had defined species. Define kind rigorously, or stop referring to it as it if has any bearing on evolutionary theory.


Micah wrote:I have not personally researched snakes regarding this topic. I think that we do observe changes due to changes in the phenotype..

This is a tautology. The phenotype of an organism is essentially the observable traits of the organism, it's morphology for starters. Saying that we observe "changes due to changes in phenotype" is saying that we observe changes because we observe changes. I think you need to clarify your understanding of phenotype. Though I haven't read it Richard Dawkins book The Extended Phenotype is likely a good place to start. Changes in phenotype of a particular species, family or genus of this suborder will have no bearing on your ability to define kind.

Micah wrote:Can you show me an example of where a snake is gaining new sets of ribs? For example going from 100 to 102? I'm assuming that the longer the snake is, the more ribs it will have.


Almost certainly, but since I already provided polydactylism and you ignored it (see below), if I provide such an instance of this occurring in snakes you'll dismiss it for all the same reasons. Until you offer a rigorous definition of kind it is pointless for me to do so. You completely ignored my question regarding the definition of snake kinds. Surely it should follow logically from your previously supplied definition, a simple yes would have sufficed.

Micah wrote:I'm I'm not mistaken, is a polydactylous cat a cat with multiple toes?

Nope, that would be all cats. Polydactylous cats are cats with a different number of toes to "normal".

Micah wrote:If so, that's not a new structure, duplicating an already existing structure isn't new, the genetic information was already present.

The goal post shift. I'm left to ponder which route to take here. I could meander off on a long discussion on information theory and note that even if it were true that this was not new information in forming the structure the information required to express the new structure would be new information. Alternatively it would be old information now expressed again which would verify atavism. Your call either way.

However, I'm inclined not to go down that route and so I shall leave it, for the most part, as yet another goal post shift that I contend suggests you have no inclination to argue evolutionary theory but rather against the straw man that you continue to erect. I'll also note that this is is an example of something I will come to shortly, the conflation of mutation and evolution.


micah wrote:If a human was born with 6 fingers I wouldn't claim it was a new kind, nor would you claim it was a new species.

The "definition" you gave me of kind would imply that it is a new kind. That's why I want you to define kind rigorously. By your definition of kind any mutation that causes structural change would result in the new organism being a new kind, so Siamese twins would be a kind all of there own, for a trivial example.

micah wrote: Lets clarify something here, duplicating an already existing structure couldn't cause a fish to evolve into a new organism.


With each passing post I grow more convinced that you think evolution happens to individuals. I get the impression that you think a mutation in an individual is evolution. It's not, it's mutation. Evolution, as I explained right from the outset, relates to populations. Any given generation of a population will be, to all intents and purposes, indistinguishable from previous generations. A fish cannot evolve, a population of fish must.


Lets posit that in a given fish a mutation occurs that causes a duplication of one of the spines in it's dorsal fin. This particular duplication happens to improve that fish's ability to swim (better steering) when compared to the rest of the population, and thus is actually marginally beneficial. Suppose this fish mates and has lots of little baby fishes, a number of which inherit the gene for the slightly improved dorsal fin. Over time, and with random chance on the right side, the new dorsal fin will become prevalent in the population. Given enough time either it will become fixed or it will go extinct, unless some form of heterozygous advantage emerges.

That's evolution. If you're arguing against something else you're likely not arguing against evolution.

micah wrote: I'm looking for an entirely new structure in the species.

Then what you are looking for is a mutation, not evolution, since evolution happens to populations and not to individuals. Further, what you are asking for would seem to be something that evolutionary theory would actually suggest couldn't go to fixation. I can't think of a requirement to explain such a structure which is why I keep asking you to name one. If you can't think of one either then why ask evolution to explain one? You're asking for a novel structure, non derived or duplicated, that goes to fixation in a population. I'd be extremely surprised if this has ever happened.

Just stop for a moment, Micah, and consider this because it is important. I'm saying that I don't think this has ever happened. Clearly I am a strong advocate of evolutionary theory. Therefore one of two things must be true here. Either I don't understand evolutionary theory (which I suspect is what you will contend), or this particular occurrence is not required by evolutionary theory. It should be noted that this might actually just be a particular aspect of evolution that I am as yet unaware of, should you provide such an example I will educate myself on it before taking a position.

You can show it to be the former simply by finding a paper on evolutionary theory that contradicts me. Alternatively, you must accept that you are arguing against a straw man. A simple assertion that it is the former, without evidence, will show that you have preconceived ideas without basis. A simple presentation of evidence will educate me one way or the other. Again, your call.

Micah wrote:First, I'd like for you to show me a new structure arising, arranging fossils in an order that you think they evolved isn't science, nor logical. They show no progression at all.

For you to write this requires cognitive dissonance or dishonesty. You earlier referred to the many "gaps" in the fossil record. To suggest that taxonomic construction cannot take place is a direct contradiction. Gaps can only exist if we can categorize fossils. That leads me to suggest that you were either being disingenuous when you referred to these gaps in an earlier post, or you are now being disingenuous by suggesting that a phylogeny cannot be constructed from fossils.

Of course they can be organised, we can talk about the geological column and geographic distribution for a start, but we've got so many unfinished lines of evidence open thus far that it seems a bit silly to start down a new path at this late stage.


Micah wrote:I'll give you a lot to work with. Fish didn't evolve legs, show me a transition between any species of fish where it is acquiring legs.

Evolution between species doesn't make sense. You cannot evolve "between" species, that would imply some form of horizontal evolution, akin to the idiotic example often cited of dogs evolving into cats etc. Species are dynamic entities, what we observe in the fossil record are snap shots in time that, when considered together, show is the progression that life has taken.

However, fish "evolving" legs is easy.

Image

I'm semi inclined to start linking to photos of seals etc which I consider to be great examples of "living transitionals", if you'll pardon the term, but I'll wait to consider what spurious objection you put forth to the mudskipper before I venture down that route.


Micah wrote:So your saying that the tail is actually the spine where it grew to long in length?

If when you refer to the spine you mean the vertebral column, then pretty much yes.

Micah wrote: Your really grasping at straws here.

I asked you before to tell me what you think a tail is. Thus far you have declined to do so. We note from the last 3 posts in this debate that you failed to comprehend the paper that discussed three instances of human tails, in particular confusing classification with cause, so the assertion that I am grasping at straws is somewhat amusing. Until and unless you define a tail such statements as this do you no good.

Micah wrote: You tried to say that humans had a tail in the embryo, when in fact it was the same spine we all have that grew faster than the rest of the body.

I didn't "try" to say anything. I did state it and I provided evidence that led to that conclusion. Go and read any paper on developmental biology, go and read the papers I've linked to in this debate. Outright denial in the face of evidence is simply willful ignorance. It will help you if you define what a tail actually is. Without that definition your arguments about what a tail isn't are irrelevant.


Micah wrote: The spine has a totally different function than a tail on any creature.

Define tail, define spine and define vertebrate please.

Micah wrote: For example, a cats tail aids it in balance and to portray emotions. The vertebrae in the tail are different from the vertebrae that make up the spine, they serve a totally different function.

You're telling me what they do, not what they are, which is a complete irrelevance at this juncture. The question is whether or not this is a tail.
Pope Rat: "Exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."

Squawk response: "O Rly?"
Sat Nov 20, 2010 12:29 pm
micah1116Posts: 58Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2010 2:12 am Gender: Male

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

You have maintained throughout that the definition of kind has some weight, has some bearing of evolutionary theory. If you can't define kind, how am I supposed to give it any credence?

Thus far you've told me what it is based on, then provided examples. An example does not a definition make, especially in light of the fact that I have provided counter examples that show your definition is not rigorous. If you are going to make reference to kind then either define it properly or agree that you are being specious.


The best I can do is to tell you that kind is based on morphology. To see if this holds us, can you give me an example of two organisms that are structurally different that can interbreed?

You keep asserting this which seems to imply that you think it has some bearing on evolutionary theory. Previous postings suggest you're asking for evidence of a new, non-derived structure, not a duplication or a variation on a previously existing structure.

This sets up a straw man. Evolutionary theory is an explanation of observations. If you can't show me an instance of the event you ask for actually happening, why would evolutionary theory have any requirement to explain it? I've now asked you multiple times to provide any two fossils in the fossil record, considered to be consecutive, that show such a novel structure arising.

The position you have taken seems to be "evolution says this should happen, but we don't see it". This is incorrect. Evolutionary theory looks at what we see, and then tries to explain it. To suggest that evolutionary theory must be able to account for this is to say that you have seen an instance of it. So, provide it. You tried earlier with the birds wing.


I'm not really sure what your trying to say here. Why would we not expect to see new structures arising? Is an ant not structurally different from an elephant? Would you not expect to see major transitions? The transitions, living and fossil should be extremely obvious. There are probably trillions of bacteria that are born every year, yet not a single one evolves, so how many does it take before one evolves? We've never seen a single example of evolution, not a single one.

Again you are giving me examples of organisms that you consider to be of the same kind. This is like me showing you a picture of a rabbit and another picture of a tiger and concluding that I had defined species. Define kind rigorously, or stop referring to it as it if has any bearing on evolutionary theory.


I just gave you the definition, organisms with the same morphology, and I just gave you a perfect example.

This is a tautology. The phenotype of an organism is essentially the observable traits of the organism, it's morphology for starters. Saying that we observe "changes due to changes in phenotype" is saying that we observe changes because we observe changes. I think you need to clarify your understanding of phenotype. Though I haven't read it Richard Dawkins book The Extended Phenotype is likely a good place to start. Changes in phenotype of a particular species, family or genus of this suborder will have no bearing on your ability to define kinnd.


Clarify my understanding of phenotype? You are correct in your definition of phenotype. As you said phenotype is simply the observed traits. I'm saying that the only changes we see are cosmetic type changes and are due to genes that are expressed that previously weren't. Taking this process and saying that over long periods of time it can lead to changes to structure, is a assumption not supported by science.

Almost certainly, but since I already provided polydactylism and you ignored it (see below), if I provide such an instance of this occurring in snakes you'll dismiss it for all the same reasons. Until you offer a rigorous definition of kind it is pointless for me to do so. You completely ignored my question regarding the definition of snake kinds. Surely it should follow logically from your previously supplied definition, a simple yes would have sufficed.


How did I ignore your definition of kind, I stated I believe there are different kinds of snakes, and I would assume that snakes with different numbers of ribs are different kinds. Do you have an example of snakes with different numbers of ribs interbreeding?

The "definition" you gave me of kind would imply that it is a new kind. That's why I want you to define kind rigorously. By your definition of kind any mutation that causes structural change would result in the new organism being a new kind, so Siamese twins would be a kind all of there own, for a trivial example.


No it wouldn't. What new genetic information is present if someone is born with fingers? You have to be able to grasp this simple concept.

With each passing post I grow more convinced that you think evolution happens to individuals. I get the impression that you think a mutation in an individual is evolution. It's not, it's mutation. Evolution, as I explained right from the outset, relates to populations. Any given generation of a population will be, to all intents and purposes, indistinguishable from previous generations. A fish cannot evolve, a population of fish must.


Lets posit that in a given fish a mutation occurs that causes a duplication of one of the spines in it's dorsal fin. This particular duplication happens to improve that fish's ability to swim (better steering) when compared to the rest of the population, and thus is actually marginally beneficial. Suppose this fish mates and has lots of little baby fishes, a number of which inherit the gene for the slightly improved dorsal fin. Over time, and with random chance on the right side, the new dorsal fin will become prevalent in the population. Given enough time either it will become fixed or it will go extinct, unless some form of heterozygous advantage emerges.

That's evolution. If you're arguing against something else you're likely not arguing against evolution.


Do you have an example of a population evolving, or is it just a huge assumption? Why don't you put your claims through the scientific method? Your giving me a scenario you came up with in your head, and conjecturing it, as if it's science. do you not see that?

For you to write this requires cognitive dissonance or dishonesty. You earlier referred to the many "gaps" in the fossil record. To suggest that taxonomic construction cannot take place is a direct contradiction. Gaps can only exist if we can categorize fossils. That leads me to suggest that you were either being disingenuous when you referred to these gaps in an earlier post, or you are now being disingenuous by suggesting that a phylogeny cannot be constructed from fossils.

Of course they can be organised, we can talk about the geological column and geographic distribution for a start, but we've got so many unfinished lines of evidence open thus far that it seems a bit silly to start down a new path at this late stage.


No, I'm saying that lining up fossils that have total different morphologies and claiming one evolved into the other isn't evolution. If you could show me a structure by structure evolution, that would be different.

Evolution between species doesn't make sense. You cannot evolve "between" species, that would imply some form of horizontal evolution, akin to the idiotic example often cited of dogs evolving into cats etc. Species are dynamic entities, what we observe in the fossil record are snap shots in time that, when considered together, show is the progression that life has taken.

However, fish "evolving" legs is easy.



I'm semi inclined to start linking to photos of seals etc which I consider to be great examples of "living transitionals", if you'll pardon the term, but I'll wait to consider what spurious objection you put forth to the mudskipper before I venture down that route.


You just don't get it do you? What transition does the mudskipper show? Do you have fossils of the mudskipper without legs? Without both gills and lungs? What fish did it evolve from? Actually this is quite funny because mudskippers are living fossils, and the fossils prove they haven't changed one bit. Do you understand that you can't show someone one fossil and claim it's transitional. Show me the fossils that show the mudskipper evolving. This is comical.

I asked you before to tell me what you think a tail is. Thus far you have declined to do so. We note from the last 3 posts in this debate that you failed to comprehend the paper that discussed three instances of human tails, in particular confusing classification with cause, so the assertion that I am grasping at straws is somewhat amusing. Until and unless you define a tail such statements as this do you no good.


Don't you know how to use a dictionary?

"the hindmost part of an animal, esp. that forming a distinct, flexible appendage to the trunk."
Sun Nov 21, 2010 9:31 pm
SquawkModeratorUser avatarPosts: 2011Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2009 8:25 pm Gender: Tree

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

micah1116 wrote:The best I can do is to tell you that kind is based on morphology. To see if this holds us, can you give me an example of two organisms that are structurally different that can interbreed?


You'd better define what you mean by interbreed here. Interbreed would typically refer to breeding between subspecies, for example between a Lion and a Tiger. Although we would consider, in common usage, a lion and a tiger to be distinct species, by rigorous classification they are not. There have been instances of ligers that are just about fertile (have produced offspring when mated with a tiger). You'll recall my definition of species earlier, a population throughout which gene transfer can occur.

In your case though we are dealing with "kinds". This brings up an issue, because what you are proposing is that I try and bring up an example of two different "kinds" interbreeding. Unfortunately for us you have declined to define kind, beyond saying "it is based on morphology". Thus my polydactylous cats example still stands.

Until and unless you define kinds rigorously I simply cannot answer this question in a satisfactory way. If you define "kinds" as being above species level (by my definition of species) then what you propose is not possible. If it is below species level then it is possible. Variation in morphology below species level will have no impact on ability to interbreed, since the ability to breed is constrained by genetics, not phenotype (unless we consider mechanical issues like the Chiwawa and Great Dane getting jiggy).


Micah wrote:I'm not really sure what your trying to say here. Why would we not expect to see new structures arising? Is an ant not structurally different from an elephant? Would you not expect to see major transitions?

If evolution predicted a population of ants morphing into populations of elephants, then yes I would. However that is not what I expect to see, and is not what evolutionary theory predicts. Evolutionary theory would predict that the precursor population to the ants would look, to all intents and purposes, identical to the extant population of ants. Just a few minor differences, principally in shape. We'd expect to see variation on existing structure, which is indeed what we do see.

The pre-curser to that population the same, and again and again. Transitions only become apparent when considered with "near neighbours", which is why comparative anatomy is so useful and why Linnaeus, oh so long ago, categorized humans as apes.

Micah wrote:The transitions, living and fossil should be extremely obvious.

Seal, otter, penguin, mudskipper, whale. All these "finished"? Creatures that live in the sea 100% of the time that breath air?

Micah wrote: There are probably trillions of bacteria that are born every year, yet not a single one evolves, so how many does it take before one evolves? We've never seen a single example of evolution, not a single one.

Nylonaise, e-coli, flu. Why do you think the flu vaccine is different every year? Reality denial isn't going to get you far in this debate.

micah wrote:I just gave you the definition, organisms with the same morphology, and I just gave you a perfect example.


And my polydactylous cat is what, a different kind?

Micah wrote:Clarify my understanding of phenotype?

Yep, had to, your post showed you didn't understand what phenotype was. Best that we all know what terms mean in order to have informed debate.

Micah wrote: You are correct in your definition of phenotype.

I know

Micah wrote:As you said phenotype is simply the observed traits. I'm saying that the only changes we see are cosmetic type changes and are due to genes that are expressed that previously weren't. Taking this process and saying that over long periods of time it can lead to changes to structure, is a assumption not supported by science.


Well lets just use your previous example of the birds wing. Could you highlight any aspect of the birds wing that, through so called "cosmetic changes" could not have arisen from the precursor form as seen in the thoropod dinosaurs? Could you highlight any structure in any organism that could not have formed from small incremental changes of ancestral forms? Just one example, your best please.


Micah wrote:How did I ignore your definition of kind, I stated I believe there are different kinds of snakes, and I would assume that snakes with different numbers of ribs are different kinds. Do you have an example of snakes with different numbers of ribs interbreeding?


Wish I'd looked for this earlier

http://www.jstor.org/pss/1443819
Effects of temperature on the development of meristic characters in Natrix fasciata
DW Osgood - Copeia, 1978 - JSTOR

This was the first paper of use when I searched for "snake vertebra duplication".

What does this paper look at? It looks at the development of a species of snake, Natrix fasciata (Banded water snake) when the embryos are exposed to different temperatures. Joy, guess what they found.

paper wrote:The effects of thermal environment on the development of embryos of Natrix fasciata were investigated in the laboratory. A total of 997 embryos were obtained from females incubated under five different thermal regimes, three constant and two fluctuating diurnally. These embryos were compared with a group of 473 wild-incubated controls. The principle objective of the study was to determine the effect of developmental temperature on vertebral number. Other objectives were to assess the effects of temperature on other characters of scutellation and to attempt to determine the optimum developmental temperature for the species studied. The effect of developmental temperature on vertebral number seems to be similar to that found in fish; an increase at both high and low temperatures with the minimum counts occurring at intermediate temperatures.


The number of vertebra in the offspring is dependent on the temperature. Increase or decrease the temperature from the mean and you get increased vertebra.

So that would be your definition of kind well and truly flattened once again.

Micah wrote:
Squawk wrote:The "definition" you gave me of kind would imply that it is a new kind. That's why I want you to define kind rigorously. By your definition of kind any mutation that causes structural change would result in the new organism being a new kind, so Siamese twins would be a kind all of there own, for a trivial example.


No it wouldn't. What new genetic information is present if someone is born with fingers? You have to be able to grasp this simple concept.


Your definition of kind involved information? Where? It's not a bother, the information canard is still just that, a canard.

Either the information required to tell that part of the body to express an extra finger is new (it wasn't telling it to express before, ergo it has to be new), or alternatively the information for the formation of the finger which will have a different construction to the finger next to it is new.

micah wrote:Do you have an example of a population evolving

Any and every single species for which genomes have been collected and analyzed across multiple generations. In particular I'm inclined to mention genetic modification and artificial selection and bring up crops and dogs. I defined evolution for you at the very start of this debate and said that I didn't think you would be ignorant enough to deny reality.

One of three things must now be true.
1. You do not understand the definition of evolution I provided
2. You are redefining evolution and have forgotten to tell us
3. You are being intentionally dishonest.
Choose, or invalidate my options with reasoned argument.

micah wrote:No, I'm saying that lining up fossils that have total different morphologies and claiming one evolved into the other isn't evolution.

Quite, it's probably paleontology or zoology, maybe comparative anatomy. Actually I suppose it's taxonomy. Meh, a combination of the above. This is a bit like saying that buying a car isn't evolution. No shit, but what does that have to do with anything?

micah wrote: If you could show me a structure by structure evolution, that would be different.

Pick a structure.

micah wrote:You just don't get it do you?

Get what?

micah wrote:What transition does the mudskipper show? Do you have fossils of the mudskipper without legs?

It's a fish that can "walk" using it's pectoral fins. The precursor form is just a fish with fins that can't be used for walking. No real "morphological change" as you seem to want, required, and yet here it is walking. This is exactly (ish) how the original tetrapods evolved.

micah wrote: Without both gills and lungs? What fish did it evolve from? Actually this is quite funny because mudskippers are living fossils, and the fossils prove they haven't changed one bit. Do you understand that you can't show someone one fossil and claim it's transitional. Show me the fossils that show the mudskipper evolving. This is comical.


Goal post shift. Ignored :D

I asked you before to tell me what you think a tail is. Thus far you have declined to do so. We note from the last 3 posts in this debate that you failed to comprehend the paper that discussed three instances of human tails, in particular confusing classification with cause, so the assertion that I am grasping at straws is somewhat amusing. Until and unless you define a tail such statements as this do you no good.


Micah wrote:Don't you know how to use a dictionary?

That the thing with all the pages and words in it? The one that does spelling and stuff? Yeah, I do. Now, how about we tally up the spelling mistakes in this debate? One of us has need of a dictionary. But I digress.

Micah wrote:
dictionary wrote:"the hindmost part of an animal, esp. that forming a distinct, flexible appendage to the trunk."



Good good, so that would mean my provided examples match your definition of a tail. What was your objection again? Note that this definition would make your spina bifida case a true tail :-o
Pope Rat: "Exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."

Squawk response: "O Rly?"
Sun Nov 21, 2010 11:21 pm
micah1116Posts: 58Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2010 2:12 am Gender: Male

Post Re: Debate: Does evidence support neo-darwinian evolution

You'd better define what you mean by interbreed here. Interbreed would typically refer to breeding between subspecies, for example between a Lion and a Tiger. Although we would consider, in common usage, a lion and a tiger to be distinct species, by rigorous classification they are not. There have been instances of ligers that are just about fertile (have produced offspring when mated with a tiger). You'll recall my definition of species earlier, a population throughout which gene transfer can occur.

In your case though we are dealing with "kinds". This brings up an issue, because what you are proposing is that I try and bring up an example of two different "kinds" interbreeding. Unfortunately for us you have declined to define kind, beyond saying "it is based on morphology". Thus my polydactylous cats example still stands.

Until and unless you define kinds rigorously I simply cannot answer this question in a satisfactory way. If you define "kinds" as being above species level (by my definition of species) then what you propose is not possible. If it is below species level then it is possible. Variation in morphology below species level will have no impact on ability to interbreed, since the ability to breed is constrained by genetics, not phenotype (unless we consider mechanical issues like the Chiwawa and Great Dane getting jiggy).


Are there any structural differences between a lion and a tiger? I never said to show me different kinds interbreeding, I said to show me organisms with different structure interbreeding. I defined kind.

If evolution predicted a population of ants morphing into populations of elephants, then yes I would. However that is not what I expect to see, and is not what evolutionary theory predicts. Evolutionary theory would predict that the precursor population to the ants would look, to all intents and purposes, identical to the extant population of ants. Just a few minor differences, principally in shape. We'd expect to see variation on existing structure, which is indeed what we do see.

The pre-curser to that population the same, and again and again. Transitions only become apparent when considered with "near neighbours", which is why comparative anatomy is so useful and why Linnaeus, oh so long ago, categorized humans as apes.


Your avoiding the issue, infact ants date back to 60 million years according to you guys, and yet it hasn't changed a bit. Comparing anatomy doesn't show evolution, how is that evidence for anything? Your just making assumptions, your not showing that they are related.

Nylonaise, e-coli, flu. Why do you think the flu vaccine is different every year? Reality denial isn't going to get you far in this debate.


Denial? What morphological change has occured.

Nylonaise: http://www.nephilimfree.com/articles/ge ... lonase.htm

I'm I'm sure instead of actually refuting the information, you'll attack the source.

E coli,flu: http://www.icr.org/article/evolution-an ... esistance/

Is there any evidence that antibiotic resistance or biochemical adaptation can lead to morphological change? Or are you ASSUMING that is will contrary to all evidence.

And my polydactylous cat is what, a different kind?


No, it is a duplication of the SAME structure, it's not a new structure, there's not new genetic information that causes it to occur.

Well lets just use your previous example of the birds wing. Could you highlight any aspect of the birds wing that, through so called "cosmetic changes" could not have arisen from the precursor form as seen in the thoropod dinosaurs? Could you highlight any structure in any organism that could not have formed from small incremental changes of ancestral forms? Just one example, your best please.


How can cosmetic changes, which are color,size, and shape, cause a dinosaur to evolve into a bird. The burden of proof is one you, not me. There's not a single structure that could arise due to cosmetic changes. Can a fish evolve legs due to cosmetic changes? Can a bacteria evolve into a mite due to cosmetic changes?

Wish I'd looked for this earlier

http://www.jstor.org/pss/1443819
Effects of temperature on the development of meristic characters in Natrix fasciata
DW Osgood - Copeia, 1978 - JSTOR

This was the first paper of use when I searched for "snake vertebra duplication".

What does this paper look at? It looks at the development of a species of snake, Natrix fasciata (Banded water snake) when the embryos are exposed to different temperatures. Joy, guess what they found.


"These extra half-ventrals were usually correlated with duplications of vertebral elements and extra ribs."

How is duplicating an already existing structure going to cause evolution? Please explain that one. Duplication of existing structures is a real process, but it doesn't cause evolution, it eithr has no effect or has a negative effect. Can you duplicate ribs on a snake and cause it to evolve legs? Ofcourse not, duplication of existing structures isn't evidence for evolution. Why can't you show me an entirely new structure that is new to the species.

Pick a structure.


Any structure, it's your choice.

It's a fish that can "walk" using it's pectoral fins. The precursor form is just a fish with fins that can't be used for walking. No real "morphological change" as you seem to want, required, and yet here it is walking. This is exactly (ish) how the original tetrapods evolved.


You avoided my question, do you have fossils of this organism without legs? How do you know they didn't walk before? Where do you get that idea from?

Goal post shift. Ignored


You mean problem for evolution, so your going to ignore it.

Good good, so that would mean my provided examples match your definition of a tail. What was your objection again? Note that this definition would make your spina bifida case a true tail
micah1116 wrote:The best I can do is to tell you that kind is based on morphology. To see if this holds us, can you give me an example of two organisms that are structurally different that can interbreed?


You'd better define what you mean by interbreed here. Interbreed would typically refer to breeding between subspecies, for example between a Lion and a Tiger. Although we would consider, in common usage, a lion and a tiger to be distinct species, by rigorous classification they are not. There have been instances of ligers that are just about fertile (have produced offspring when mated with a tiger). You'll recall my definition of species earlier, a population throughout which gene transfer can occur.

In your case though we are dealing with "kinds". This brings up an issue, because what you are proposing is that I try and bring up an example of two different "kinds" interbreeding. Unfortunately for us you have declined to define kind, beyond saying "it is based on morphology". Thus my polydactylous cats example still stands.

Until and unless you define kinds rigorously I simply cannot answer this question in a satisfactory way. If you define "kinds" as being above species level (by my definition of species) then what you propose is not possible. If it is below species level then it is possible. Variation in morphology below species level will have no impact on ability to interbreed, since the ability to breed is constrained by genetics, not phenotype (unless we consider mechanical issues like the Chiwawa and Great Dane getting jiggy).


Micah wrote:I'm not really sure what your trying to say here. Why would we not expect to see new structures arising? Is an ant not structurally different from an elephant? Would you not expect to see major transitions?

If evolution predicted a population of ants morphing into populations of elephants, then yes I would. However that is not what I expect to see, and is not what evolutionary theory predicts. Evolutionary theory would predict that the precursor population to the ants would look, to all intents and purposes, identical to the extant population of ants. Just a few minor differences, principally in shape. We'd expect to see variation on existing structure, which is indeed what we do see.

The pre-curser to that population the same, and again and again. Transitions only become apparent when considered with "near neighbours", which is why comparative anatomy is so useful and why Linnaeus, oh so long ago, categorized humans as apes.

Micah wrote:The transitions, living and fossil should be extremely obvious.

Seal, otter, penguin, mudskipper, whale. All these "finished"? Creatures that live in the sea 100% of the time that breath air?

Micah wrote:There are probably trillions of bacteria that are born every year, yet not a single one evolves, so how many does it take before one evolves? We've never seen a single example of evolution, not a single one.

Nylonaise, e-coli, flu. Why do you think the flu vaccine is different every year? Reality denial isn't going to get you far in this debate.

micah wrote:I just gave you the definition, organisms with the same morphology, and I just gave you a perfect example.


And my polydactylous cat is what, a different kind?

Micah wrote:Clarify my understanding of phenotype?

Yep, had to, your post showed you didn't understand what phenotype was. Best that we all know what terms mean in order to have informed debate.

Micah wrote:You are correct in your definition of phenotype.

I know

Micah wrote:As you said phenotype is simply the observed traits. I'm saying that the only changes we see are cosmetic type changes and are due to genes that are expressed that previously weren't. Taking this process and saying that over long periods of time it can lead to changes to structure, is a assumption not supported by science.


Well lets just use your previous example of the birds wing. Could you highlight any aspect of the birds wing that, through so called "cosmetic changes" could not have arisen from the precursor form as seen in the thoropod dinosaurs? Could you highlight any structure in any organism that could not have formed from small incremental changes of ancestral forms? Just one example, your best please.


Micah wrote:How did I ignore your definition of kind, I stated I believe there are different kinds of snakes, and I would assume that snakes with different numbers of ribs are different kinds. Do you have an example of snakes with different numbers of ribs interbreeding?


Wish I'd looked for this earlier

http://www.jstor.org/pss/1443819
Effects of temperature on the development of meristic characters in Natrix fasciata
DW Osgood - Copeia, 1978 - JSTOR

This was the first paper of use when I searched for "snake vertebra duplication".

What does this paper look at? It looks at the development of a species of snake, Natrix fasciata (Banded water snake) when the embryos are exposed to different temperatures. Joy, guess what they found.

paper wrote:The effects of thermal environment on the development of embryos of Natrix fasciata were investigated in the laboratory. A total of 997 embryos were obtained from females incubated under five different thermal regimes, three constant and two fluctuating diurnally. These embryos were compared with a group of 473 wild-incubated controls. The principle objective of the study was to determine the effect of developmental temperature on vertebral number. Other objectives were to assess the effects of temperature on other characters of scutellation and to attempt to determine the optimum developmental temperature for the species studied. The effect of developmental temperature on vertebral number seems to be similar to that found in fish; an increase at both high and low temperatures with the minimum counts occurring at intermediate temperatures.


The number of vertebra in the offspring is dependent on the temperature. Increase or decrease the temperature from the mean and you get increased vertebra.

So that would be your definition of kind well and truly flattened once again.

Micah wrote:
Squawk wrote:The "definition" you gave me of kind would imply that it is a new kind. That's why I want you to define kind rigorously. By your definition of kind any mutation that causes structural change would result in the new organism being a new kind, so Siamese twins would be a kind all of there own, for a trivial example.


No it wouldn't. What new genetic information is present if someone is born with fingers? You have to be able to grasp this simple concept.


Your definition of kind involved information? Where? It's not a bother, the information canard is still just that, a canard.

Either the information required to tell that part of the body to express an extra finger is new (it wasn't telling it to express before, ergo it has to be new), or alternatively the information for the formation of the finger which will have a different construction to the finger next to it is new.

micah wrote:Do you have an example of a population evolving

Any and every single species for which genomes have been collected and analyzed across multiple generations. In particular I'm inclined to mention genetic modification and artificial selection and bring up crops and dogs. I defined evolution for you at the very start of this debate and said that I didn't think you would be ignorant enough to deny reality.

One of three things must now be true.
1. You do not understand the definition of evolution I provided
2. You are redefining evolution and have forgotten to tell us
3. You are being intentionally dishonest.
Choose, or invalidate my options with reasoned argument.

micah wrote:No, I'm saying that lining up fossils that have total different morphologies and claiming one evolved into the other isn't evolution.

Quite, it's probably paleontology or zoology, maybe comparative anatomy. Actually I suppose it's taxonomy. Meh, a combination of the above. This is a bit like saying that buying a car isn't evolution. No shit, but what does that have to do with anything?

micah wrote:If you could show me a structure by structure evolution, that would be different.

Pick a structure.

micah wrote:You just don't get it do you?

Get what?

micah wrote:What transition does the mudskipper show? Do you have fossils of the mudskipper without legs?

It's a fish that can "walk" using it's pectoral fins. The precursor form is just a fish with fins that can't be used for walking. No real "morphological change" as you seem to want, required, and yet here it is walking. This is exactly (ish) how the original tetrapods evolved.

micah wrote:Without both gills and lungs? What fish did it evolve from? Actually this is quite funny because mudskippers are living fossils, and the fossils prove they haven't changed one bit. Do you understand that you can't show someone one fossil and claim it's transitional. Show me the fossils that show the mudskipper evolving. This is comical.


Goal post shift. Ignored :D

I asked you before to tell me what you think a tail is. Thus far you have declined to do so. We note from the last 3 posts in this debate that you failed to comprehend the paper that discussed three instances of human tails, in particular confusing classification with cause, so the assertion that I am grasping at straws is somewhat amusing. Until and unless you define a tail such statements as this do you no good.


Micah wrote:Don't you know how to use a dictionary?

That the thing with all the pages and words in it? The one that does spelling and stuff? Yeah, I do. Now, how about we tally up the spelling mistakes in this debate? One of us has need of a dictionary. But I digress.

Micah wrote:
dictionary wrote:"the hindmost part of an animal, esp. that forming a distinct, flexible appendage to the trunk."



Good good, so that would mean my provided examples match your definition of a tail. What was your objection again? Note that this definition would make your spina bifida case a true tail :-o


Oh please! You know what it is caused by. Spina bifida does no such thing. How does duplication in spinal vertebrae support your idea that we used to have a tail? When such a disorder can occur in any organism that has a spine, and even one evolutionists don't believe had a tail.
Mon Nov 22, 2010 11:19 pm
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