Intelligent design, indeed

| 47 Comments

I occasionally run PubMed searches on “intelligent design” – not to see if any IDists have published any new research supporting ID, that never seems to happen – but to see if any new editorials about or critiques of ID have appeared lately.

Actually, most of what you get on these searches are references to engineering-related publications describing new inventions and the like. Sometimes you get publications about biomimetics, the process of using biological “designs” to inspire human invention.

Today, this was the top hit on my “intelligent design” search. It has to be seen to be believed:

Zuo J, Yan G, Gao Z. (2005). “A micro creeping robot for colonoscopy based on the earthworm.” Journal of Medical Engineering Technology Jan-Feb;29(1):1-7. OpenURL Link

If ever there was a shoe-in for an IgNobel Prize, this is it. The obvious question is, should the Prize be awarded in Biology, Engineering, or Medicine?

47 Comments

I wonder why they chose an earthworm. A better choice would have been a parasite that naturally crawls up your ass.

I always thought ID was up its own… well, anyway. It does fit with the idea that it’s not real science - they just go through the motions.

I’ll go away now.

R

Interesting.

Two obvious problems, of course.

First is that in order to get a good view during a colonoscopy the colon is inflated with gas. The artificial worm cannot crawl upward in that case. It’s possible, I suppose, to put the patient on a table that rotates in 3-axes to solve that problem.

The second problem is it’s dark in there. Motive power doesn’t seem to me to be the limiting factor but rather illuminating power. Possibly could be solved by using infrared but I’m not sure that has sufficient resolution without requiring exotic hardware like SQUIDs.

Sharp bristles like a real earthworm has might solve the first problem and, with the increased traction available, might be able to tow a fine power cord behind it to solve the second problem.

A great idea, actually. Novel, not obvious, and valuable. I’d authorize pursuing a patent on it. Of course unless a patent application has already been filed it’s too late as the idea has now been disclosed to the public.

Lastly, I’d like to point out that mutation/selection has never been observed creating a

1) novel body type 2) novel tissue type 3) novel organ

The power of mutation/selection to accomplish those things must be taken as a matter of faith. Faith is for religion, not science. I recommend that any teaching of mutation/selection in public school beyond its ability to cause microevolutionary change be relegated to comparative religion class as a basic tenet underlying atheist beliefs. Mutation/selection driven macroevolution doesn’t belong in a science class because it just isn’t science - it’s a grand leap of faith that gives comfort to atheists.

Richard Gere is financing this research.

Dave, could you please explain something to me? I’m having a very hard time understanding.

You’ve posted that “mutation/selection has never been observed creating” list repeatedly - on pretty much every thread you post on, it seems, whether it’s relevant or not. And every time, about a half-dozen other posters have jumped in to give at least that many examples of mutation/selection being observed doing exactly those things.

Do you even read those other posts? If so, why do you ignore them? Do you think that they’re lying, or that the examples they give aren’t good enough to counter your argument? If the latter, are there any examples that science (as opposed to ID strawmen) would predict that could possibly be good enough? If the former, why waste your time with a bunch of liars?

Personally, I suspect that you *don’t* read these other posts, because the language of your list is exactly the same each time. If you were reading the rebuttals to your list, you would be constantly refining it and adding examples to pre-empt defeated counter arguments. Instead, you seem to be relying on cut-and-paste.

Do you consider that list to be such a knockout punch that you should post it in early and often in many different threads? The other posters don’t seem to think so - they surely aren’t left stumbling around in defeat. Do you not realize how foolish and lazy it makes you look to post the exact same thing time after time, when the other posters rebut it every time? Do you think that if you post it enough they will finally throw up their hands in defeat and admit that they’ve been wrong/lying all along? Or have you given up on the regular posters and you just post it over and over again in the hopes of catching and convincing some newbie lurker before the rebuttals are posted again?

No one is going to throw up their hands, and if you actually want to convince people, you’d be better served to toddle off to a site where there aren’t a bunch of scientifically-literate posters to take your list and turn it into a lesson plan. The only reason I can think of for you to even hang around here is malicious pleasure in derailing interesting discussions and turning them into repetitive arguments. If that is the case, I pity you for your pettiness as a person and the smallness of your life.

Still, pity or no, I do wish that you would go away, or that whoever’s in charge here would ban you. You contribute nothing. I know that you probably consider yourself a lone voice of truth in this bastion of the liberal/atheist conspiracy, and I do hate to add martyrdom to your delusions of grandeur, but your “voice” is an annoying echo, a racket that drowns out actual discussion. You’re not an educated, interesting, or useful opponent - you’re just a bully who shoves his way into every conversation and shouts the same thing over and over until he breaks it up, and that should only be tolerated so long.

BTW, if any of those scientifically-literate posters I referred to earlier are reading this, I recommend that you continue to discuss the robot worm and don’t waste your time rebutting the echo…again.

DaveScot,

Could you identify one novel tissue/organ present in humans that is not also not present (albeit in modified form) in a chimpanzee, or a babboon, or a lemur, or even a dog?

Missed one

El-Samad, Kurata, Doyle, Gross and Khammash, “Surviving heat shock: Control strategies for robustness and performance,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, 10.1073/pnas.0403510102, published online before print January 24, 2005.

Molecular biology studies the cause-and-effect relationships among microscopic processes initiated by individual molecules within a cell and observes their macroscopic phenotypic effects on cells and organisms. These studies provide a wealth of information about the underlying networks and pathways responsible for the basic functionality and robustness of biological systems. At the same time, these studies create exciting opportunities for the development of quantitative and predictive models that connect the mechanism to its phenotype then examine various modular structures and the range of their dynamical behavior. The use of such models enables a deeper understanding of the design principles underlying biological organization and makes their reverse engineering and manipulation both possible and tractable. The heat shock response presents an interesting mechanism where such an endeavor is possible. Using a model of heat shock, we extract the design motifs in the system and justify their existence in terms of various performance objectives. We also offer a modular decomposition that parallels that of traditional engineering control architectures.

STUDIES EXPAND UNDERSTANDING OF X CHROMOSOME http://www.nih.gov/news/pr/mar2005/nhgri-16.htm

“We have also gained a deep insight into the way evolution has shaped the chromosomes that determine our gender to give them unique properties,” said Mark Ross, Ph.D., project leader at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute.

The research team compared the human X chromosome to the genome sequences of a variety of other organisms, including dog, rat, mouse and chicken. They found that the gene order of the human and dog X chromosomes were virtually identical. Comparing gene order in the human and rodent sequences showed several segments had reshuffled in the rodent lineage, and an interesting, 9 million base pair region appears to have been deleted from the rodent chromosome after humans and rodents diverged from their common ancestor.

Of particular interest was the comparison of the human X chromosome to the sequence of the chicken. Most of the genes on the short arm of the human X are found on chicken chromosome 1, and most of the genes on the long arm of the human X are found on chicken chromosome 4. These findings support the idea that mammalian X and Y chromosomes evolved from an “ordinary” ancestral pair of identical chromosomes.

Huh? Why is there no mention of the role “intelligent design” played?

The X chromosome is the most structurally constant chromosome in all of mammalian karyology. It is virtually indentical in chimps, orangs, gorillas and humans. I have interpreted that to support a gynogenetic (semi-meiotic) origin for these forms. By way of contrast, the least homologous of all chromosomes seems to be the Y, indicating that it has separately evolved independently in the mammalian line, a conclusion reached by Vorontsov many years ago. I have discussed this matter at some length in my Manifesto. These observations further support my contention that a fundamental role for obligatory sexual reproduction is to bring progressive evolution to a halt. It has yet to be demonstrated that any sexual form can exceed the species level even when aided by the most intensive artificial selection.

The interesting similarities between dog and human sequences may help explain why dogs think they are human. You know what I mean- know thyself.

John A. Davison

The X chromosome is the most structurally constant chromosome in all of mammalian karyology. It is virtually indentical in chimps, orangs, gorillas and humans. I have interpreted that to support a gynogenetic (semi-meiotic) origin for these forms. By way of contrast, the least homologous of all chromosomes seems to be the Y, indicating that it has separately evolved independently in the mammalian line, a conclusion reached by Vorontsov many years ago. I have discussed this matter at some length in my Manifesto. These observations further support my contention that a fundamental role for obligatory sexual reproduction is to bring progressive evolution to a halt. It has yet to be demonstrated that any sexual form can exceed the species level even when aided by the most intensive artificial selection.

The interesting similarities between dog and human sequences may help explain why dogs think they are human. You know what I mean- know thyself.

John A. Davison

Matt, thank you! You put it quite eloquently and drive the point home very well. Dave hasn’t responded, so perhaps he’s taken your advice (yeah right) or been banned. I’m not holding my breath. Parasites are pernicious little buggers and don’t go away easily.

Eli quipped

Richard Gere is financing this research.

Eli, that is the funniest damn thing I’ve read here in a long time. You kill me.

Matt

I agree with DaveScot that mutation/selection has never been observed creating anything; I will go a step further. Mutation/selection is anti-evolutionary. Every point mutation is either deleterious or neutral. The only beneficial mutations are those that return the locus to its original or wild-type status. As I have said before, that is why feral animals typically return to their prototypes when artificial selection is replaced by natural selection. In short, Mendelian allelic mutations have absolutely nothing to do with evolution, only with extinction, and Natural Selection has served only as a device to neutralize and even reverse all tendencies to modify and transform the species.

Now I am accustomed to being ignored or worse so I will leave you with the thoughts of others. To make it easy for you I have presented these in chronological order.

“Of course, in this matter. as elsewhere throughout Nature, we have to do with the operation of fixed and constant natural laws, but there is, it is believed, already enough evidence to show that that these as yet unknown natural laws or law will never be resolved into the the action of “Natural Selection.” St George Jackson Mivart, 1871

“In all the research since 1869 on the transformations observed in closely successive phyletic series, no evidence whatever, to my knowledge, has been brought forward by any palaeontologist, either of the vertebrated or invertebrated animals, that the fit originates by selection from the fortuitous.” Henry Fairfield Osborn, 1909

“Natural selection is a real factor in connection with mimicry, but its function is to conserve and render preponderant an already existent likeness, not to build up that likeness through the accumulation of small variations, as is so generally assumed.” Reginal C. Punnett, 1915

“The struggle for existence and natural selection are not progressive agencies, but being, on the contrary, conservative, maintain the standard.” Leo Berg, 1922

“A cluster of facts makes it very plain that Mendelian, allelomorphic mutation plays no part in creative evolution. It is, as it were, a more or less pathological fluctuation in the genetic code. It is an accident on the ‘magnetic tape’ on which the primary information for the species is recorded.” Pierre Grasse, 1978

“Rather, our analysis supports a non-random model of chromosome evolution that implicates specific regions within the mammalian genome as having been predisposed to both recurrent small-scale duplication and large scale evolutionary rearrangements.” Bailey et al, 2004

How do you like them apples?

John A. Davison

Matt

I agree with DaveScot that mutation/selection has never been observed creating anything; I will even go a step further. Mutation/selection is anti-evolutionary. Every point mutation is either deleterious or neutral. The only beneficial mutations are those that return the locus to its original or wild-type status. As I have said before, that is why feral animals typically return to their prototypes when artificial selection is replaced by natural selection. In short, Mendelian allelic mutations have absolutely nothing to do with evolution, only with extinction, and Natural Selection has served only as a device to neutralize and even reverse all tendencies to modify and transform the species.

Now I am accustomed to being ignored or worse so I will leave you with the thoughts of others. To make it easy for you I have presented these in chronological order.

“Of course, in this matter. as elsewhere throughout Nature, we have to do with the operation of fixed and constant natural laws, but there is, it is believed, already enough evidence to show that that these as yet unknown natural laws or law will never be resolved into the the action of “Natural Selection.” St George Jackson Mivart, 1871

“In all the research since 1869 on the transformations observed in closely successive phyletic series, no evidence whatever, to my knowledge, has been brought forward by any palaeontologist, either of the vertebrated or invertebrated animals, that the fit originates by selection from the fortuitous.” Henry Fairfield Osborn, 1909

“Natural selection is a real factor in connection with mimicry, but its function is to conserve and render preponderant an already existent likeness, not to build up that likeness through the accumulation of small variations, as is so generally assumed.” Reginal C. Punnett, 1915

“The struggle for existence and natural selection are not progressive agencies, but being, on the contrary, conservative, maintain the standard.” Leo Berg, 1922

“A cluster of facts makes it very plain that Mendelian, allelomorphic mutation plays no part in creative evolution. It is, as it were, a more or less pathological fluctuation in the genetic code. It is an accident on the ‘magnetic tape’ on which the primary information for the species is recorded.” Pierre Grasse, 1978

“Rather, our analysis supports a non-random model of chromosome evolution that implicates specific regions within the mammalian genome as having been predisposed to both recurrent small-scale duplication and large scale evolutionary rearrangements.” Bailey et al, 2004

How do you like them apples?

John A. Davison

Matt

I agree with DaveScot that mutation/selection has never been observed creating anything; I will go a step further. Mutation/selection is anti-evolutionary. Every point mutation is either deleterious or neutral. The only beneficial mutations are those that return the locus to its original or wild-type status. As I have said before, that is why feral animals typically return to their prototypes when artificial selection is replaced by natural selection. In short, Mendelian allelic mutations have absolutely nothing to do with evolution, only with extinction, and Natural Selection has served only as a device to neutralize and even reverse all tendencies to modify and transform the species.

Now I am accustomed to being ignored or worse so I will leave you with the thoughts of others. To make it easy for you I have presented these in chronological order.

“Of course, in this matter. as elsewhere throughout Nature, we have to do with the operation of fixed and constant natural laws, but there is, it is believed, already enough evidence to show that that these as yet unknown natural laws or law will never be resolved into the the action of “Natural Selection.” St George Jackson Mivart, 1871

“In all the research since 1869 on the transformations observed in closely successive phyletic series, no evidence whatever, to my knowledge, has been brought forward by any palaeontologist, either of the vertebrated or invertebrated animals, that the fit originates by selection from the fortuitous.” Henry Fairfield Osborn, 1909

“Natural selection is a real factor in connection with mimicry, but its function is to conserve and render preponderant an already existent likeness, not to build up that likeness through the accumulation of small variations, as is so generally assumed.” Reginal C. Punnett, 1915

“The struggle for existence and natural selection are not progressive agencies, but being, on the contrary, conservative, maintain the standard.” Leo Berg, 1922

“A cluster of facts makes it very plain that Mendelian, allelomorphic mutation plays no part in creative evolution. It is, as it were, a more or less pathological fluctuation in the genetic code. It is an accident on the ‘magnetic tape’ on which the primary information for the species is recorded.” Pierre Grasse, 1978

“Rather, our analysis supports a non-random model of chromosome evolution that implicates specific regions within the mammalian genome as having been predisposed to both recurrent small-scale duplication and large scale evolutionary rearrangements.” Bailey et al, 2004

How do you like them apples?

John A. Davison

Matt

I agree with DaveScot that mutation/selection has never been observed creating anything; I will go a step further. Mutation/selection is anti-evolutionary. Every point mutation is either deleterious or neutral. The only beneficial mutations are those that return the locus to its original or wild-type status. As I have said before, that is why feral animals typically return to their prototypes when artificial selection is replaced by natural selection. In short, Mendelian allelic mutations have absolutely nothing to do with evolution, only with extinction, and Natural Selection has served only as a device to neutralize and even reverse all tendencies to modify and transform the species.

Now I am accustomed to being ignored or worse so I will leave you with the thoughts of others. To make it easy for you I have presented these in chronological order.

“Of course, in this matter. as elsewhere throughout Nature, we have to do with the operation of fixed and constant natural laws, but there is, it is believed, already enough evidence to show that that these as yet unknown natural laws or law will never be resolved into the the action of “Natural Selection.” St George Jackson Mivart, 1871

“In all the research since 1869 on the transformations observed in closely successive phyletic series, no evidence whatever, to my knowledge, has been brought forward by any palaeontologist, either of the vertebrated or invertebrated animals, that the fit originates by selection from the fortuitous.” Henry Fairfield Osborn, 1909

“Natural selection is a real factor in connection with mimicry, but its function is to conserve and render preponderant an already existent likeness, not to build up that likeness through the accumulation of small variations, as is so generally assumed.” Reginal C. Punnett, 1915

“The struggle for existence and natural selection are not progressive agencies, but being, on the contrary, conservative, maintain the standard.” Leo Berg, 1922

“A cluster of facts makes it very plain that Mendelian, allelomorphic mutation plays no part in creative evolution. It is, as it were, a more or less pathological fluctuation in the genetic code. It is an accident on the ‘magnetic tape’ on which the primary information for the species is recorded.” Pierre Grasse, 1978

“Rather, our analysis supports a non-random model of chromosome evolution that implicates specific regions within the mammalian genome as having been predisposed to both recurrent small-scale duplication and large scale evolutionary rearrangements.” Bailey et al, 2004

How do you like them apples?

John A. Davison

Matt

I agree with DaveScot that mutation/selection has never been observed creating anything; I will go a step further. Mutation/selection is anti-evolutionary. Every point mutation is either deleterious or neutral. The only beneficial mutations are those that return the locus to its original or wild-type status. As I have said before, that is why feral animals typically return to their prototypes when artificial selection is replaced by natural selection. In short, Mendelian allelic mutations have absolutely nothing to do with evolution, only with extinction, and Natural Selection has served only as a device to neutralize and even reverse all tendencies to modify and transform the species.

Now I am accustomed to being ignored or worse so I will leave you with the thoughts of others. To make it easy for you I have presented these in chronological order.

“Of course, in this matter. as elsewhere throughout Nature, we have to do with the operation of fixed and constant natural laws, but there is, it is believed, already enough evidence to show that that these as yet unknown natural laws or law will never be resolved into the the action of “Natural Selection.” St George Jackson Mivart, 1871

“In all the research since 1869 on the transformations observed in closely successive phyletic series, no evidence whatever, to my knowledge, has been brought forward by any palaeontologist, either of the vertebrated or invertebrated animals, that the fit originates by selection from the fortuitous.” Henry Fairfield Osborn, 1909

“Natural selection is a real factor in connection with mimicry, but its function is to conserve and render preponderant an already existent likeness, not to build up that likeness through the accumulation of small variations, as is so generally assumed.” Reginal C. Punnett, 1915

“The struggle for existence and natural selection are not progressive agencies, but being, on the contrary, conservative, maintain the standard.” Leo Berg, 1922

“A cluster of facts makes it very plain that Mendelian, allelomorphic mutation plays no part in creative evolution. It is, as it were, a more or less pathological fluctuation in the genetic code. It is an accident on the ‘magnetic tape’ on which the primary information for the species is recorded.” Pierre Grasse, 1978

“Rather, our analysis supports a non-random model of chromosome evolution that implicates specific regions within the mammalian genome as having been predisposed to both recurrent small-scale duplication and large scale evolutionary rearrangements.” Bailey et al, 2004

How do you like them apples?

John A. Davison

Matt

I agree with DaveScot that mutation/selection has never been observed creating anything; I will go a step further. Mutation/selection is anti-evolutionary. Every point mutation is either deleterious or neutral. The only beneficial mutations are those that return the locus to its original or wild-type status. As I have said before, that is why feral animals typically return to their prototypes when artificial selection is replaced by natural selection. In short, Mendelian allelic mutations have absolutely nothing to do with evolution, only with extinction, and Natural Selection has served only as a device to neutralize and even reverse all tendencies to modify and transform the species.

Now I am accustomed to being ignored or worse so I will leave you with the thoughts of others. To make it easy for you I have presented these in chronological order.

“Of course, in this matter. as elsewhere throughout Nature, we have to do with the operation of fixed and constant natural laws, but there is, it is believed, already enough evidence to show that that these as yet unknown natural laws or law will never be resolved into the the action of “Natural Selection.” St George Jackson Mivart, 1871

“In all the research since 1869 on the transformations observed in closely successive phyletic series, no evidence whatever, to my knowledge, has been brought forward by any palaeontologist, either of the vertebrated or invertebrated animals, that the fit originates by selection from the fortuitous.” Henry Fairfield Osborn, 1909

“Natural selection is a real factor in connection with mimicry, but its function is to conserve and render preponderant an already existent likeness, not to build up that likeness through the accumulation of small variations, as is so generally assumed.” Reginal C. Punnett, 1915

“The struggle for existence and natural selection are not progressive agencies, but being, on the contrary, conservative, maintain the standard.” Leo Berg, 1922

“A cluster of facts makes it very plain that Mendelian, allelomorphic mutation plays no part in creative evolution. It is, as it were, a more or less pathological fluctuation in the genetic code. It is an accident on the ‘magnetic tape’ on which the primary information for the species is recorded.” Pierre Grasse, 1978

“Rather, our analysis supports a non-random model of chromosome evolution that implicates specific regions within the mammalian genome as having been predisposed to both recurrent small-scale duplication and large scale evolutionary rearrangements.” Bailey et al, 2004

How do you like them apples?

John A. Davison

After having to plow through four copies of JAD’s unsupported trash, I kindly request of the powers that be in this thread to delete the duplicates and consider banning JAD for spammer.

By the way, JAD, to my knowledge you have as of this time failed to defend yourself from the criticism done in this website to your manifesto. If this isn’t so, please direct me to the post in which you did.

Hope that helps,

Grey Wolf

Matt

I agree with DaveScot that mutation/selection has never been observed creating anything; I will go a step further. Mutation/selection is anti-evolutionary. Every point mutation is either deleterious or neutral. The only beneficial mutations are those that return the locus to its original or wild-type status. As I have said before, that is why feral animals typically return to their prototypes when artificial selection is replaced by natural selection. In short, Mendelian allelic mutations have absolutely nothing to do with evolution, only with extinction, and Natural Selection has served only as a device to neutralize and even reverse all tendencies to modify and transform the species.

Now I am accustomed to being ignored or worse so I will leave you with the thoughts of others. To make it easy for you I have presented these in chronological order.

“Of course, in this matter. as elsewhere throughout Nature, we have to do with the operation of fixed and constant natural laws, but there is, it is believed, already enough evidence to show that that these as yet unknown natural laws or law will never be resolved into the the action of “Natural Selection.” St George Jackson Mivart, 1871

“In all the research since 1869 on the transformations observed in closely successive phyletic series, no evidence whatever, to my knowledge, has been brought forward by any palaeontologist, either of the vertebrated or invertebrated animals, that the fit originates by selection from the fortuitous.” Henry Fairfield Osborn, 1909

“Natural selection is a real factor in connection with mimicry, but its function is to conserve and render preponderant an already existent likeness, not to build up that likeness through the accumulation of small variations, as is so generally assumed.” Reginal C. Punnett, 1915

“The struggle for existence and natural selection are not progressive agencies, but being, on the contrary, conservative, maintain the standard.” Leo Berg, 1922

“A cluster of facts makes it very plain that Mendelian, allelomorphic mutation plays no part in creative evolution. It is, as it were, a more or less pathological fluctuation in the genetic code. It is an accident on the ‘magnetic tape’ on which the primary information for the species is recorded.” Pierre Grasse, 1978

“Rather, our analysis supports a non-random model of chromosome evolution that implicates specific regions within the mammalian genome as having been predisposed to both recurrent small-scale duplication and large scale evolutionary rearrangements.” Bailey et al, 2004

How do you like them apples?

John A. Davison

I apolopgize for the repetitions but I was blocked seven times when trying to post. I just hung in there as I felt it was important.

John A. Davison

Grey Wolf

I do not feel compelled to defend myself with respect to anything I have ever published. I prefer attack to defense, especially when dealing with intractable ideologues like yourself.

John A. Davison

John, you state that feral animals typically revert to their “prototypic” forms.. but what examples?

Here in Australian, we have an abundance of feral animals, and yet most retain either characteristics of their “domesticated” condition, or do not resemble the ancestral form.

Cases in point:

Dogs. Lots of feral dogs, and yet we see nothing approximating wolves - they are all mongrels, with no predictable morphology or tendency towards particular traits. Pigs. If pigs are indeed descended from _Sus scrofa_, the Eurasian wild boar, why do feral pigs in Australia resemble other forms like peccaries, both socially and physiologically? Goats - we should expect to see dun coloured goats, but in the wild flocks of Australia, there are plenty of black and white ones - should they have not been picked out by natural selection? Cats - I will grant you that many feral cats appear to show tabby-patterning - but the pattern is only one aspect. Feral cats in Aus. quite often grow to sizes well above that of _Felis sylvestris_. Horses - plenty of white or patterned brumbies, which are plainly obvious.

I mean, can you give a more specific example, or perhaps elaborate more on what “prototypic” is defined as?

Oh, is that how it works, JAD? I write somewhere as many lies as I want - say, that a religion/political system/science promotes racism and hate mongering and the kicking of small furry animals* - and when someone calls me on it, I just say “I prefer attack to defense” and that makes it all right?

You’re a fraud, anyway. You said that you’d answer the questions of those who had read your work. Well, I started reading it, but at the first lie/mistake I stopped, and came back to ask about it. But now you refuse to answer. Besides, I wasn’t the only one to call you on that mistake/lie, JAD - so even if you won’t answer me, answer the other person.

And I am intractable? Let me guess, because I am patient and continue to ask for proof of creationist claims again and again? Because I would prefer the people making the outlandish claims to present some evidence? For, against all reason, expecting the creationists to at least do a tenth of the research done by biologists who do accept evolution before I bother listening to them? For some other reason completely? Help me here, JAD, when I call you names, I explain why.

Hope that helps,

Grey Wolf

*Please note I am not saying that JAD makes any such declaration about evolution - just using the most blatant generic lie I can think of

I have made no creationist claims whatsoever. I have followed my unfailing nose and it has led me to the Prescribed Evolutionary Hypothesis. Sorry about that. If Grey Wolf is convinced I have lied, I recommend that Grey Wolf be the first one to make that claim in hard copy in a refereed journal. No one else has. Go for it Grey Wolf, this may be your only chance to make the big time. What Grey Wolf says here at Panda’s Thumb means absolutely nothing except as it demonstrates Grey Wolf’s insecurity about the Darwinian fairy tale.

John A. Davison

I have made no creationist claims whatsoever

Good for you, I think. I have not said you did. I (and at least one other poster) said that you made a false representation of what evolution theory says.

I recommend that Grey Wolf be the first one to make that claim in hard copy in a refereed journal

I very much doubt any peer-reviewed journal is interested in someone pointing out that a completely unknown guy posted in his website a misrepresentation of what Evolution Theory really says. JAD, your ego is quite big, but the fact that you’re a liar doesn’t interest anyone. I keep reminding you because until you admit it/correct it/defend it you are revealed to have no strength to your claims and thus other readers might not be confused into thinking your word is worth something.

Hope that helps,

Grey Wolf, who will now go back to ignoring JAD, and who wonders if he could adapt the Visual Basic program to work in his OS

Keep it up Grey wolf. your brand of irrational nonsense is music to my ancient ears. I have made virtually no original claims. Anyone with half a brain would realize that everything I have published rests firmly on the works of my predecessors, not one of whom was so weak-minded as to subscribe to the Darwinian fairy tale.

As for my website and the Manifesto, that was produced solely to inflame a bigoted university administration and congenital Darwinian mystics like yourself. Judging from the responses it has elicited, it has been pretty successful. You will find my published papers somewhat more subdued in tone.

As for ignoring me, which you seem quite incapable of doing, promises - promises.

Incidentally there is as yet no evolutionary theory, only failed and untested hypotheses, a couple of which happen to be mine.

John A, Davison

It should surprise no one that in Australia placental mammals might not revert back to their prototypes. They have no placental predators in Australia or have you guys introduced mountain lions, bob cats, wolves and grizzly bears also? Or do koala bears and kangaroos feed on dogs, cats and pigs? Get with the program. Such reasoning escapes me.

John A. Davison

“If ever there was a shoe-in for an IgNobel Prize, this is it.  The obvious question is, should the Prize be awarded in Biology, Engineering, or Medicine?”

I think you’re not giving it sufficient credit. Colonoscopy can be difficult. Some people have a kink in their intestine which is difficult or impossible for the usual device to get past, leaving a portion of the intestine uninspected.

A smaller viewing device could be a very good thing.

Another recent development is a wireless camera pill (disposable!), but that doesn’t have enough battery power to last through the whole digestive system.

“They have no placental predators in Australia “

… what do you think the feral dogs and cats eat? There ARE placental predators in Australia, that arrived at the same time as the placental herbivores. And why, for example, are the Tasmanian devils ignored? They eat the introduced small prey - so it’s not as if marsupials and placentals do not interact in the wild.

Again, why do the feral pigs, for instance, appear to be more like peccaries than the European wild boar? Their predation has nothing to do with their modern appearance, which would, to me at least, be more indicative of adaptation to a harsh dry landscape - they are lean, mean and fast, and subsist on tough, coarse fodder in semi-arid landscapes.

You’re overlooking the fact that many feral animals in Australia are now part of the ecosystem (if rabbits were wiped out, it would be even more disastrous now that they represent a large proportion of prey for endemic and introduced predators.

“Get with the program. Such reasoning escapes me”

Please, I had already considered those notions before, and living *in* Australia, I think I know at least a little about how our ecosystems work.

Now that I’ve elaborated on it, perhaps you can explain how your notion can be applied here then?

First of all I am not an ecologist, I am a bench scientist. You don’t have any top predators in Australia and you know it. That is why your ecosystem is so screwed up. I am sure this isn’t going to happen but I am willing to bet that if you introduced a few lions and tigers your precious ecosystem would in damn short order settle down into a situation where virtually all intraspecific variation would disappear as it has in every other natural ecosystem. Our feral dogs here in North America are virtually indistinguishable from coyotes which is why they call them coydogs. Every damn chickadee in the whole damn universe looks axactly like every other damn chickadee because Natural Selection, that silly cornerstone of Darwimpian mysticism will not tolerate any deviations from the chickadee norm. Bye now.

John A. Davison

I thought the top predator in Australia was the cane toad. :~)

JAD is dancing on the edge of getting it (or is avoiding getting it.) He’s half right about natural selection being a stabilizing force. If a feral animal is returned to its original environment, then natural selection will return the species to the ancestral features that were successful. In a different environment, you would not expect this. This could explain the pigs to peccary shift observed in Australia. JAD should allow himself to consider this possibility because he can write it off as “microevolution”.

JAD might also want to clarify what all the “damn chickadees” look like. There are seven different species in North America that couldn’t tell JAD from an Australopithecus, but clearly can tell each other apart, maintain separate gene pools and exploit separate niches. If he is talking about some ID concept of the chickadee kind, let us know where the edges of the kind are. Are tits a different kind from chickadees? Are all the finches in a kind? How about all the thrushes, finches, and larks that make up the passeroid superfamily ? Where is that edge that defines the kind of birds that cannot evolve into each other?

The edges are that no sexually reproducing organism has ever been known to evolve into another sexually reproducing organism through the agency of sexual reproduction. That is what caused me to come up with the semi-meiotic hypothesis back in 1984, an hypothesis that still has not been rigorously tested. That is where the edges are. Natural selection never had anything whatsoever to do with true speciation or the formation of any of the higher taxonomic categories. Natural Selection is purely anti-evolutionary, purely conservative and has never been a creative factor in evolutionary change. Get used to it folks. That is the way it is. Have a nice pointless, random or semi-random, meaningless, selectionist, mutationist, Darwinist day. As for the entire Darwinian “groupthink” so perfectly illustrated right here at Panda’s Thumb:

Ask not for whom the bell tolls. It tolls for thee.

John A. Davison

The edges are that no sexually reproducing organism has ever been known to evolve into another sexually reproducing organism through the agency of sexual reproduction. That is what caused me to come up with the semi-meiotic hypothesis back in 1984, an hypothesis that still has not been rigorously tested. That is where the edges are. Natural selection never had anything whatsoever to do with true speciation or the formation of any of the higher taxonomic categories. Natural Selection is purely anti-evolutionary, purely conservative and has never been a creative factor in evolutionary change. Get used to it folks. That is the way it is. Have a nice pointless, random or semi-random, meaningless, selectionist, mutationist, Darwinist day. As for the entire Darwinian “groupthink” so perfectly illustrated right here at Panda’s Thumb:

Ask not for whom the bell tolls. It tolls for thee.

John A. Davison

John, you seem to be saying that no species, as defined by the scientific community, can arise through natural selection. Does this include species that can produce fertile young but will not interbreed naturally? (Dogs and wolves for example.) Does it include species that can interbreed but almost never produce fertile young? (e.g. Horses and donkeys) You’re saying that none of the seven species of chickadees in North America could have possibly evolved from each other through natural selection? I’m used to antievolutionists setting the goalpost out a little farther than that.

I take it you reject every argument made on the talks.origins list of observed instances of speciation. I don’t expect you to answer each case, but can you give an overall reason why those are not examples of speciation?

John, you seem to be saying that no species, as defined by the scientific community, can arise through natural selection. Does this include species that can produce fertile young but will not interbreed naturally? (Dogs and wolves for example.) Does it include species that can interbreed but almost never produce fertile young? (e.g. Horses and donkeys) You’re saying that none of the seven species of chickadees in North America could have possibly evolved from each other through natural selection? I’m used to antievolutionists setting the goalpost out a little farther than that.

I take it you reject every argument made on the talks.origins list of observed instances of speciation. I don’t expect you to answer each case, but can you give an overall reason why those are not examples of speciation?

I’ve already pointed out that domestic wheat is descended from wild emmer grass, and can no longer interbreed with it.

I’ve also pointed out that the two species of grey tree frog in the southeastern US, Hyla chrysoscelis and Hyla versicolor, are so identical that they cannot be told apart in the field, yet they cannot interbreed (their chromosomes are incompatible).

Not “does not interbreed”. Not “prefers not to interbreed”. CAN not interbreed.

I’ve asked if wild emmer/domestic wheat are or are not the same “kind” and why.

I’ve asked if the two treefrogs are or are not the same “kind” and why.

For some odd reason, though, I’ve not gotten any answer from JAD or any other of our fundie friends here . … ‘

Ask not for whom the JAD trolls, he trolls for thee.

“First of all I am not an ecologist, I am a bench scientist.”

Then how do you feel qualified to state that in the wild, feral animals revert to “prototypic” states, if the ecological system can vary so much?

“You don’t have any top predators in Australia and you know it.”

We do NOW. We barely did when Europeans first arrived, then we wiped them out. Then we added our own. Foxes, dogs, cats - these are all part of the ecosystem now - they eat the native animals, and they eat the feral prey animals.

“I am sure this isn’t going to happen but I am willing to bet that if you introduced a few lions and tigers your precious ecosystem would in damn short order settle down into a situation where virtually all intraspecific variation would disappear as it has in every other natural ecosystem.”

Such as which ones? Examples? How are feral dogs somehow less of an issue when they can be found across the whole country, than releasing a few big cats? The dogs are breeding and thriving faster than any large feline would. We’ve already gained a modicum of stability now, since the populations of many of the prey have stabilised - many native predators have adapted to feeding on the feral prey like rabbits, and the feral predators can often make short work of most of the feral ungulates.

“Our feral dogs here in North America are virtually indistinguishable from coyotes which is why they call them coydogs.”

a) I was under the impression coy-dogs were thought to be hybrids; b) but this doesn’t *prove* your “prototypic” argument when there are feral dogs *here* that are nothing like coyotes. Some are dingo-like, but this is as much due to hybridisation than to any “prototypic” reversion.

“Bye now.”

Aw, you’re not going to actually back up your original statement with any more examples? You’ve got your “coydogs” - but what about others from around the world? Surely your explanation can be applied globally, and thus is better than evolutionary models, right?

JAD - I am something of a newcomer to the creation/evolution debate, and I don’t have the proper background to rebut even obvious pseudoscience if it’s presented in a technical manner. At best, I’d be left with quoting others as authorities, which doesn’t impress anyone. This is a science forum, and people want evidence.

I think that many of the other posters have done a fine job of picking up the gauntlet for me. I note that your contemptuous dismissals have caused none of them to reel away in defeat and humiliation, and that you have rebutted very few of their specific examples and claims. It seems your apples are rotten.

I felt justified in my post to Davescot because even a newcomer and layman can recognize when someone is repeating the same thing over and over without regard to relevance or anyone’s input. Something you don’t do, to be fair - you may preach the same message every time you show up, but at least you write a new sermon and don’t depend on your cut-and-paste.

However, now I have a question for you:

As for my website and the Manifesto, that was produced solely to inflame a bigoted university administration and congenital Darwinian mystics like yourself.

Incidentally there is as yet no evolutionary theory, only failed and untested hypotheses, a couple of which happen to be mine.

That is what caused me to come up with the semi-meiotic hypothesis back in 1984, an hypothesis that still has not been rigorously tested.

Why on Earth are these hypotheses untested? Wouldn’t it be a far better use of your time than writing manifestos? Don’t all scientists, bench or no, want to make discoveries based on their own hypotheses, rather than sitting around pointing at the holes (aka research opportunities) in someone else’s? Surely you can get funding, no matter how bigoted the university administration is. There are many anti-evolution organizations out there, and they seem to be well-funded. Surely they would jump at the chance to fund research and experimentation into your hypotheses - after all, that’s how many unpopular, even persecuted hypotheses in the history of science gained wide acceptance: they just collected evidence until disagreement with them became absurd. Now *that* would be a knockout punch that no amount of arguing on a science blog could match.

Since I understand you to be an ID proponent from other posts, I have a request for you as well: once you’ve tested your hypotheses to whatever conclusion, do you think that perhaps you could try to come up with some tests to discover something about the Intelligent Designer? Perhaps you could work with some forensic scientists. After all, the whole point of their field is to discover something about the nature of an intelligent agent from the evidence they’ve left behind. If the Intelligent Designer is not, in fact, God (omnipotent, omniscient, unknowable - and thus totally beyond science and science classes), then there must be something to learn about him/her/it/them. I’m certainly curious.

PS to Marcus Good - yes, coydogs are believed to be hybrids. At least around the area where I grew up. I don’t know if there might be a different breed where Dr. Davison lives.

Matt

I retired from the University in 2000. I have no laboratory. I have reached my conclusions about a prescribed evolution through the time-honored method of the elimination of alternatives, those being chiefly the Lamarckian and Darwinian hypotheses, both of which have failed the acid test of experiment and the testimony of the fossil record.

I see no evidence for God at present and I have no responsibility to offer any explanation for the nature of a Creator beyond the fact that what we observe in the living world could never have occurred by chance. My view of God is very similar to that of Einstein:

“If God created the world, his primary worry was certainly not to make it its understanding easy for us.”

I also agree with Einstein in being a strict determinist, which also leaves no role for chance:

“Everything is determined…by forces over which we have no control.”

I have no truck with organized religions as having any role in scientific inquiry. Einstein again:

“I believe in Spinoza’s God who reveals himself in the harmony of all that exists, but not in a God who concerns himself with the fate and actions of human beings.”

On this as on every other forum on which I have been involved the same ridiculous polarizations continue. Einstein, once more:

“The main present-day conflicts between the spheres of religion and science lies in the concept of a personal God.”

My position has always been that both camps are dead wrong which is why I have not been very successful in furthering my convictions.

I do not give sermons. I lecture in a huge empty auditorium just as did Leo Berg, Richard B. Goldschmidt, Otto Schindewolf and Pierre Grasse among many others too numerous to mention.

I realize my answers will not satisfy your questions but this is the best I can come up with right now. Thanks for at least presenting your comments in a civilized matter, although I don’t appreciate your insistence that my apples are rotten. If I thought they were I wouldn’t be peddling them either here or in peer reviewed journals. They are free you know.

John A. Davison

JAD - I can see why you aren’t pursuing these hypotheses now if you have retired. But you came up with your semi-meiotic hypothesis in 1984. Why didn’t you test it at any point between then and 2000?

And isn’t the “time-honored method of elimination of alternatives” illegitimate in science? After all, eliminating the alternatives does nothing to provide positive evidence for one’s favored hypothesis. It’s entirely possible that one’s favored hypothesis could be equally flawed, resulting in an answer of “none of the above” and a need for further research. That, as I understand it, is the problem with ID today: even if Evolution collapsed tomorrow, ID would have nothing to offer in its place. With that in mind, do you have any idea why younger evolution opponents than yourself don’t turn some of the money they use on political and legal campaigns to laboratory experiments or field research?

With that in mind, do you have any idea why younger evolution opponents than yourself don’t turn some of the money they use on political and legal campaigns to laboratory experiments or field research?

Indeed. Ahmanson has given over $5 million to Discovery Institute. Did they use ANY of it to produce, investigate or research a scientific theory of ID? Nope – they used ALL of it for political organizing to force their as-yet-nonexistent “theory” into public school classrooms.

Gee, I wonder why that would be . … . .

Re “Gee, I wonder why that would be .…..”

[sound of Jeopardy! theme music]

Henry

To even consider Intelligent Design as a matter for debate is insane. It is a given without which nothing else makes any sense.

John A. Davison

Matt

How do you know what I did between 1984 and my retirement? I doubt you would even know what the conditions are that would make a test viable. Let me just say that the conditions which had to be met were not available to me. What is really significant is the refusal of the evolutionary establishment to test even their own failed hypothesis any more, not to mention one that could destroy it in a millisecond. Darwinism is now running on fumes. Molecular biology and chromosome karyology are providing direct and unimpeachable evidence for the Prescribed Evolutionary Hypothesis and I am pleased as punch about it. Read it and weep.

If you or anyone would simply acknowledge this growing literature you would be forced to agree with me. Instead you are content to lash out in knee-jerk fashion at ideas that conflict with your own, labeling them as creationist and pseudoscientific when in fact it is Darwinism that is pseudoscientific and always was. It is a scandal and a mandatory hoax essential to the preservation of a Godless, aimless, purposeless view of the world, a view which, like political liberalism, has a strong genetic component. Get used to it because that is the way it is.

John A. Davison

JAD -

Of the two of us, I’m not the one who is lashing out, sir. I have expressed skepticism of your position, which isn’t the same as calling it a Godless hoax. I did not call you insane, nor did I tell you to read it and weep.

I don’t know what you did between 1984 and your retirement, which is why I asked. I know that you didn’t test your hypothesis, because you said so yourself. I asked a reasonable question, and you responded with a venomous rant. Clearly, my best course of action is to join the rest of the posters at this site in ignoring you.

Matt

So ignore. I am crushed. Since you don’t know what I did between 1984 and my presumed retirement, it is obvious you have not examined my vitae or the several papers I have published in that interval. Furthermore I have not retired anyway as I am still publishing and writing. It is the Darwinians that retired from science eons ago. They just keep putting out the same old mutation/selection mindless nonsense, oblivious to the fact that allelic mutations are anti-evolutionary and were never a creative element in the evolutionary scenario.

I recommend you do exactly what you suggest. Join the rest. That is exactly what the Darwimps have always done with their critics right from the onset of the biggest and, yes, Godless hoax ever perpetrated in the history of science.

I have lost patience with all who cannot recognize the complete failure of the most idiotic hypothesis ever concocted by the imagination of man.

John A. Davison

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Nick Matzke published on March 16, 2005 2:46 AM.

The Bathroom Wall was the previous entry in this blog.

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