New “Reports of the NCSE” is out

| 42 Comments

Here. I was especially interested in a couple of articles. One, by Lorence G and Barbara J Collins, is More Geological Reasons Noah’s Flood Did Not Happen (pdf). It contains a good discussion of what “uniformitarianism” means in contemporary geology, as distinguished from its 19th century usage.

Another is from James A Shapiro, University of Chicago geneticist, whose ideas about an alleged paradigm shift in evolutionary theory have been severely criticized by (among others) Jerry Coyne, also at the U of Chicago. See

Shapiro’s article in the new RNCSE, however, is an attempted rebuttal of Larry Moran’s scathing RNCSE review of Shapiro’s new book, Evolution: A View from the 21st Century. Moran’s review concluded

Shapiro, like [Richard von] Sternberg, is widely admired in the “intelligent design” community and there’s a good reason for this. This book is highly critical of old-fashioned evolutionary theory (neo-Darwinism) using many of the same silly arguments promoted by the Fellows of the Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture. Those fellows are dead wrong and so is Shapiro.

Fun times.

42 Comments

Has anyone read Shapiro’s book who can give me some idea of what he thinks “natural genetic engineering” really means?

I gave up midways through the book. Maybe if he could take a clue from Gary Gaulin and make some diagrams we might understand what he is aiming at. His writing is after all a bit more coherent than GG’s.

But I pulled the book from the shelf today and may perhaps read the rest of it although I don’t have much hope of satori.

I haven’t read his latest book but looked through some of his papers some time back. I cannot recall any real definition of “natural genetic egineering” by Shapiro. He just claims that any molecular-biological process is part of a toolbox a cell can kind of willfully use to deal with challenges it faces. Please correct me if I am wrong but IIRC he accepts mutations as random events while at the same time he emphasizes that cells can increase mutation rates and genome rearrangements to gain new material later to be honed by other “natural genetic egineering” to produce new phenotypes. I guess he wouldn’t call them fitter or better adapted because IIRC he is denying selection as a driving force of evolution.

Mr Shapiro is a evolutionist and shows again that criticism of evolutionary biology , and paradigm dreams, is so much a modern option that one can hope to be in the forefront when the rewards for it happen. ID/YEC criticisms of evolutionary biology have hit home. We know this in the poor reactions of our opponents . They truly question motives and character and intelligence and not the merits. As predicted for a failing hypothesis.

Mr Shapiro might be the sharper one about these things and is confident he is not hurting his career. If a hypothesis has critics like this , from its own ranks, and growing criticism from outside the ranks then can one predict the end of a tired old, and impossible, idea.

I read the geology paper. First this YEC says the k-t line is the flood line and so only deposition below is from the flood. Yes uniformtarianism (sp) is something to run from as it was more then simple it was simplistic. In fact mechanisms within flow events are increasingly becoming recognized as agents of change and seldom slow action deeds.

The simple idea in deposition stratas is to see them from deposition events and therefore great events and thewrefore a single great event with segregated flows as the origin of the deposits. Thats the simple answer and accords with God’s word about a great flood/moving water event. Its not the simple answer to imagine long deposition followed by gaps of time followed by long deposition of a different type of sediment and on and on. They simply never imagined the great flood being a option and doing that much work.

Please correct me if I am wrong but IIRC he accepts mutations as random events while at the same time he emphasizes that cells can increase mutation rates and genome rearrangements to gain new material later to be honed by other “natural genetic egineering” to produce new phenotypes.

Shapiro is vague and avoids using the term “Lamarckist”, but he simply seems to be a Lamarckist. (Note: I am using that term in the accepted 21st century way; no disparagement of the brilliant work of the actual pioneering historical scientist known as Lamarck is intended.)

That’s what the term “natural genetic engineering” implies.

The word “engineering” implies deliberate, conscious effort.

The same old critiques of Lamarckism apply - why are there germline and somatic mutations with negative consequences (not just for offspring but for the actual individual themselves), for example?

The exact contribution level of genetic drift versus natural selection is a valid question but has nothing to do with “engineering”.

There is simply no need to postulate “natural genetic engineering”. Mutations - all types of mutations - are chemical events. Humans observe them to occur as random variables - we can often predict the frequency at which some types of mutations will occur, and different types occur at different frequencies, but we can’t predict exactly which mutations will occur. Those are the exact characteristics of random variables. If you roll two fair dice, and take the sum, the total 7 will come up, over time, six times more frequently than the total 12. But you can’t predict exactly which rolls will give the total 7.

A supernatural deity such as the FSM could be causing all or some mutations, but if so, that entity is “making it look perfectly random”. We can never rule out such an entity, but we can note that there is no need whatsoever to conjecture such an entity, and no evidence to support the existence of one (this point is not intended as a broad discussion about “the existence of God”; I’m talking about mutations).

Once a mutation occurs, it may or may not impact the phenotype of an organism that carries that allele in its genome. If it does affect the phenotype it can be selected for. Whether it affects the phenotype or not it can increase or decrease in the population via random genetic drift.

For whatever reason, the human brain is very strongly biased to assume Lamarckism. It’s fairly common even for people defending science to make statements like “when the weather was dry the finches ‘needed’ bigger bills to crack harder seeds” or “herbivorous dinosaurs may have developed spikes on their tails ‘in order to’ defend themselves against predators, or compete for mates”. Perhaps because we humans consciously experience life as a series of seemingly voluntary but also severely constrained decisions. However, our decisions don’t directly control the mutations that arise in each of the insanely large numbers of mitotic (and in many people, meiotic) cell divisions that take place in the human body in, say, a day.

harold said:

A supernatural deity such as the FSM could be causing all or some mutations, but if so, that entity is “making it look perfectly random”. We can never rule out such an entity, but we can note that there is no need whatsoever to conjecture such an entity, and no evidence to support the existence of one (this point is not intended as a broad discussion about “the existence of God”; I’m talking about mutations).

It is perhaps worth noting in this context that both classical mutagenesis and directed evolution – both powerful tools used by humans to genetically engineer genes and organisms – rely on random mutation + non-random selection. This is why I periodically ask design advocates why they think their designer isn’t using an evolutionary algorithm. They never seem to get around to responding …

Robert Byers said: I read the geology paper.

No you didn’t. You have proven time after time on this board that you lack the ability to read scientific papers. Your reading skills are far too low for you to have read this paper. Unless by “read” you mean “ran my eyes over the words.” Most people take “read” to include “comprehension” which you certainly are not capable of here.

The simple idea in deposition stratas is to see them from deposition events and therefore great events and thewrefore a single great event with segregated flows as the origin of the deposits. Thats the simple answer and accords with God’s word about a great flood/moving water event.

And here’s the evidence to prove my point. You have completely failed to understand or even to address the EVIDENCE presented in the paper. Until you do that, you haven’t “read” the paper. You’ve just pretended to.

Thanks for reading the paper Robert. You know so many creationists just claim to read papers when they actually haven’t. It’s refreshing to find someone so honest and so excited about science and learning. Now Robert you will forgive me if I actually don’t believe that you read the paper. I know you said you did and I know you would never lie, unlike all the other creationists who defile this site.

So Robert, perhaps you would not mind explaining to everyone exactly why the radiolarian fossil record completely demolish the magic flood hypothesis. Exactly what explanation do you have for the multiple layers in an exact evolutionary sequence? How were all of these layers produced by the magic flood? Why were they deposited in this order if there is no difference in size or density of the 4000 different species?

You can refuse to answer of course. But then everyone will just assume that you didn’t read the paper and that you were just lying. You wouldn’t want that now would you Robert? After all, you wouldn’t want to tarnish your sterling reputation here would you?

We’ll call that the end of the Byers-fest for this thread.

I notice that Jerry Coyne uses the term “random” in a way that I mildly disapprove of.

I’m in favor of using terms from probability in the way they are used in probability.

Mutations are random for the reason I noted above.

Mutations - all types of mutations - are chemical events. Humans observe them to occur as random variables - we can often predict the frequency at which some types of mutations will occur, and different types occur at different frequencies, but we can’t predict exactly which mutations will occur. Those are the exact characteristics of random variables. If you roll two fair dice, and take the sum, the total 7 will come up, over time, six times more frequently than the total 12. But you can’t predict exactly which rolls will give the total 7.

Jerry Coyne says -

(By “random,” evolutionists mean “mutations occur regardless of whether they’d enhance the fitness of the organism.”)

But that characteristic of mutations is best described as independence

Mutations occur randomly, from the human perspective, because we can predict their frequency but can’t predict exactly which will occur next.

Their probability of occurrence independent of the reproductive success and/or resulting life expectancy of the recipient organism. A given mutation is just as likely to occur, whether an organism “needs” it or not. That characteristic is most analogous to the probability concept of independence.

Please note that I completely agree with Coyne on how mutations occur and what they do, of course. This is just an issue of clarity of terminology. I personally think it would be more clear to refer to mutations as being independent of the “needs” of an organism, and random in the way they occur.

Larry Moran has responded to Shapiro.

Other than an early review of “Darwin’s Black Box” I have read almost nothing by Shapiro. In his review he clearly distanced himself from both mainstream science and the anti-evolution movement. So I don’t know, but would appreciate any updates, whether he has joined the movement, or remains one of those few oddballs who reject it, but remain among its “useful idiots.”

Von Sternberg is another story. Early on he appeared to be pursuing another “scientific paradigm”, though I’m not sure if his PR-to-testing ratio was ever anywhere near that which would qualify it as science. Either way, his radical, paranoid authoritarian agenda thrust him straight into the arms of the movement, so instead of his new “theory” being promoted as merely a better way to explain ~4 billion years of speciation, he, with a straight face, claimed that it was is “perpendicular” to the “debate,” and that he has fruitful discussions with everyone from mainstream science to young-earthers. And presumably flat-earthers too. In other words, he sold out to the “don’t ask, don’t tell what happened when, where or how” scam, aka the “big tent” scam. Unless Shapiro has clearly jumped that shark, I would be wary about comparing him to the one who redefined the phrase “peer review.”

It gets confusing. There’s a Robert Shapiro, chemist, who wrote Origins: A Skeptic’s Guide to the Creation of Life on Earth which is, I found, a little too accommodating to religious beliefs but was still a good introduction to the various scientific hypotheses about abiogenesis. Then there’s another chemist called Robert Shapiro who discovered the tosylhydrazone decomposition reaction.

Anyway, as regards James Shapiro and his “I’m against the orthodoxy and the heterodoxy” attitude, here’s the perfect xkcd.

https://me.yahoo.com/a/j5i6uksLusgE[…]j_JIeOO3eKfg–#35e25 said:

Has anyone read Shapiro’s book who can give me some idea of what he thinks “natural genetic engineering” really means?

The answer is apparently no, but this at least is what he says:

“My argument is that molecular research over the past sixty years on DNA change processes has taught us that virtually all genetic variation results from the action of regulated cell biochemistry, including a wide array of cutting, splicing and polymerizing functions that I summarize under the term “natural genetic engineering”. I assert that this realization represents a fundamental shift from the conventional view that genetic change is a random, accidental process.:

Now as Larry Moran correctly points out, there is absolutely nothing at all new about any of these mechanisms and there is absolutely nothing nonrandom or directed about any of them. Shapiro is apparently just trying to say that there is more to mutations that just simple point mutations and only he understands this. If he is making any more specific claim no one can seem to figure out what it is.

Now if he wants to talk about the evolution of evolveability or something like that, he might be on to something interesting. But playing word games and climbing into bed with creationists isn’t going to convince anyone to take him seriously.

Here is the list of the processes that he apparently things are not covered in any textbook:

“Frankly, I am not aware of textbooks that have routinely covered mutator polymerases, diversity-generating retroelements, retrosplicing group II introns, CRISPRs, SINE elements and many other natural genetic engineering systems over the past 40 years.”

Once again as Larry points out, nothing new or directed about any of them. “Natural genetic engineering” apparently means anything that happens.

DS said:

Here is the list of the processes that he apparently things are not covered in any textbook:

“Frankly, I am not aware of textbooks that have routinely covered mutator polymerases, diversity-generating retroelements, retrosplicing group II introns, CRISPRs, SINE elements and many other natural genetic engineering systems over the past 40 years.”

Once again as Larry points out, nothing new or directed about any of them. “Natural genetic engineering” apparently means anything that happens.

As Larry Moran points out at Sandwalk all except of the elements except CRISPs are known for ages and can be found in 20 years old textbooks. Obviously, Shapiro doesn’t know the leading textbooks that are available and regularly updated since the 80s. IMO the fact that CRISPs have not been included in these books is based on the fact that they represent a specialty in bacteria while cell and molecular biology textbooks emphasize general basic functions found in all domains of life and mechanisms present in eukaryotes especially mammals.

DS said:

https://me.yahoo.com/a/j5i6uksLusgE[…]j_JIeOO3eKfg–#35e25 said:

Has anyone read Shapiro’s book who can give me some idea of what he thinks “natural genetic engineering” really means?

The answer is apparently no, but this at least is what he says:

“My argument is that molecular research over the past sixty years on DNA change processes has taught us that virtually all genetic variation results from the action of regulated cell biochemistry, including a wide array of cutting, splicing and polymerizing functions that I summarize under the term “natural genetic engineering”. I assert that this realization represents a fundamental shift from the conventional view that genetic change is a random, accidental process.:

Now as Larry Moran correctly points out, there is absolutely nothing at all new about any of these mechanisms and there is absolutely nothing nonrandom or directed about any of them. Shapiro is apparently just trying to say that there is more to mutations that just simple point mutations and only he understands this. If he is making any more specific claim no one can seem to figure out what it is.

Now if he wants to talk about the evolution of evolveability or something like that, he might be on to something interesting. But playing word games and climbing into bed with creationists isn’t going to convince anyone to take him seriously.

There is an interesting pattern here.

Some scientists refer to situations in which a (relatively) high mutation rate (and resultant greater variability of offspring), is selected for, as “neo-Lamarckism”. They probably shouldn’t, but it’s a well ensconced tendency.

Of course, there’s nothing magical about that. Mutation rate is highly impacted by the reaction kinetics of various DNA polymerases and DNA repair enzymes. The mutation rate can’t go above some limit or meaningful reproduction becomes impossible, perhaps, but it can vary. Here’s another example, which James Shapiro didn’t even mention. (The statement about B-cell lymphomas is misleading - that’s a large class of diseases and many of them do NOT have an immunoglobulin-gene-hyper-mutated phenotype - but the article is otherwise pretty good.)

Shapiro seems to be arguing that this type of “neo-Lamarckism” (selection for higher rate of random variation) is evidence for the other type of Lamarckism - the delusion that cells “consciously choose” mutations. It isn’t.

Larry Moran speculates that Shapiro must have a motive, and that he may be a closet creationist. Although Shapiro’s arguments can be dealt with without making this conjecture, I would not be surprised if Larry Moran is right. Alternately, and not mutually exclusively, Shapiro may be enamored of a political ideology that is hostile to science. However, we can only speculate about his motives, but the flaws in his arguments are clear.

Well in order to demonstrate “natural genetic engineering” in any meaningful sense you need three things, goal, direction and mechanism.

1) Goal There must me a specified goal, presumably something adaptive in a given environment. Of course this also implies a conscious being with some motivation, but as long as a specific goal can be identified, that should be enough to test the hypothesis.

2) DIrection You must know the rate and distribution of all of the random processes causing genetic changes and then you must test the observed rate and distribution in order to determine if there is any statistical difference WITH RESPECT TO THE GOAL. See that’s the thing, unless you have specified the goal a priori, there is no way to test the hypothesis.

3) Mechanism There must be some way in which the process operating can produce a non random result WITH RESPECT TO THE GOAL. If you cannot determine what this c=mechanism is, then it is very difficult to distinguish between the distribution of mutations before selection and after selection. Of course if you know the goals and motives of the designer, er I mean the engineer, this shouldn’t be too difficult.

Now of course for human genetic engineering, it is trivial to determine these three elements. I honestly haven’t read the Shapiro book, but if he has addresses these issues, it isn’t apparent in any of the responses. But until these issues are addressed, all he has is a meaningless catch phrase and an unfortunate association with pseudo scientific nonsense.

DS said:

Well in order to demonstrate “natural genetic engineering” in any meaningful sense you need three things, goal, direction and mechanism.

1) Goal There must me a specified goal, presumably something adaptive in a given environment. Of course this also implies a conscious being with some motivation, but as long as a specific goal can be identified, that should be enough to test the hypothesis.

2) DIrection You must know the rate and distribution of all of the random processes causing genetic changes and then you must test the observed rate and distribution in order to determine if there is any statistical difference WITH RESPECT TO THE GOAL. See that’s the thing, unless you have specified the goal a priori, there is no way to test the hypothesis.

3) Mechanism There must be some way in which the process operating can produce a non random result WITH RESPECT TO THE GOAL. If you cannot determine what this c=mechanism is, then it is very difficult to distinguish between the distribution of mutations before selection and after selection. Of course if you know the goals and motives of the designer, er I mean the engineer, this shouldn’t be too difficult.

Now of course for human genetic engineering, it is trivial to determine these three elements. I honestly haven’t read the Shapiro book, but if he has addresses these issues, it isn’t apparent in any of the responses. But until these issues are addressed, all he has is a meaningless catch phrase and an unfortunate association with pseudo scientific nonsense.

This is an extremely good point.

I mentioned above one reason why humans are biased toward assuming Lamarckist teleological mechanisms - simply the fact that we humans self-experience much of our behavior as a conscious evaluation of the environment, followed by constrained but voluntary and planned behavioral response. We tend to project those traits onto other species and inanimate objects.

Another reason is simply the tendency to post-hoc rationalization. Ducks have webbed feet, therefore some ancient duck ancestor species must have “decided” that they wanted their offspring to swim and begun deliberately adding mutations to their genome that would tend toward a webbed foot phenotype.

However, in fact, there is no reason to assume that mutations related to webbed feet occurred at a greater frequency than other mutations, in the ancestral to duck population (as Lamarckism implies). It seems to be very hard for certain human brains to grasp the fact that mutations beneficial in a given environment are mainly selected for. Of course some environments are more mutagenic than others and so on, but it is glaringly obvious that the rate at which mutations occur is independent of their potential impact on future phenotypes. Rather, it is the rate at which they increase or decrease in frequency in the population after they occur which is related to their phenotypic impact.

Of interest, despite the professed love between Shapiro and ID/creationists, there is a massive contradiction between ID/creationist dogma and Lamarckism, including Shapiro’s latter day Lamarckism.

Shapiro’s implied claim is that either cells “choose” their own beneficial mutations, or else a god supernatural designer the Flying Spaghetti Monster cosmic “genetic engineer” chooses/enacts beneficial mutations.

This is totally contradictory to the “no beneficial mutations” claim that ID/creationists have been repeating ad nauseum for years.

You are indeed correct. And I think that one of the reasons why, over and above the basic human tendency for anthropomorphism, is the need to deny the incredible amount of waste and inefficiency and differential mortality on which the scenario depends. Humans just don’t like to think about such things. They would much rather believe that the cells, or the “intelligent designer” just poofed the desirable changes into existence than that millions of individuals had to die before any particular adaptation could increase in frequency. The human capacity for rationalization and reality denial is almost unlimited. Science must continually guard against such biased perspectives.

They would much rather believe that the cells, or the “intelligent designer” just poofed the desirable changes into existence than that millions of individuals had to die before any particular adaptation could increase in frequency.

But all those individuals would have died anyway, regardless of whether their species was evolving or not.

Henry

Henry J said:

They would much rather believe that the cells, or the “intelligent designer” just poofed the desirable changes into existence than that millions of individuals had to die before any particular adaptation could increase in frequency.

But all those individuals would have died anyway, regardless of whether their species was evolving or not.

Henry

The concept of individual death really only fully applies to eukaryotes with sexual reproduction, anyway. Granted, when bacteria divide mitotically, an “original” genome goes into one cell and a mildly novel genome (at least some original mutations) goes into another. But the concept of individuality is much more hazy.

It’s also worth noting that in a population in which every individual lives to a ripe old age and reproduces heartily, there would still be selection if some individuals reproduced even faster than others. Such a population cannot be indefinitely sustained in any terrestrial environment, but one could model such a population, and rather easily show that there would still be selection - some alleles becoming more frequent and others less frequent, over time.

And of course, reproductive advantage is population specific. Larger animals like humans (any population of humans) reproduce far more slowly, in terms of number of offspring produced per unit time, than many smaller animals. Nevertheless humans are quite dominant in the biosphere and doing far better than almost all the other wild large animals.

I guess the ID/creationist love for Dr. Shapiro is less intense than sometimes implied. Not a single troll has rushed explosively to his defense.

It’s also worth noting that in a population in which every individual lives to a ripe old age and reproduces heartily, there would still be selection if some individuals reproduced even faster than others. Such a population cannot be indefinitely sustained in any terrestrial environment, but one could model such a population, and rather easily show that there would still be selection - some alleles becoming more frequent and others less frequent, over time.

I should note that although the competetion for resources by terrestrial organisms, and consequent intense natural selection, seems “harsh” to humans, that is a purely subjective and probably purely human perception.

Few other species have the neurologic structure to think about or care about natural selection.

Humans experience strong emotional awareness of events like being preyed on or going hungry. It’s probable that at least some other species experience emotional reactions.

On the other hand, insect and fish species may easily be observed to exhibit responses that humans consider “distress” when preyed on, but it is unclear whether this suggests a conscious emotional experience. It’s quite plausible that desperate escape behaviors long predate emotional awareness of engaging in such behaviors. After all, you don’t really need to even “know” that you are engaging in such behaviors for them to be effective.

Most of the biosphere consists of microbes, fungi, and plants. We are stuck with awareness, and probably other highly cephalized species have some element of it as well. But most of the biosphere cannot know or care about natural selection.

Harold wrote:

“I guess the ID/creationist love for Dr. Shapiro is less intense than sometimes implied. Not a single troll has rushed explosively to his defense.”

Maybe that’s because they don’t know what he’s talking about either.

DS said:

Maybe that’s because they don’t know what he’s talking about either.

Since when has that stopped them from commenting?

Harold wrote

Another reason is simply the tendency to post-hoc rationalization. Ducks have webbed feet, therefore some ancient duck ancestor species must have “decided” that they wanted their offspring to swim and begun deliberately adding mutations to their genome that would tend toward a webbed foot phenotype.

It’s of some note that one of the handouts John Freshwater used said

We all know that [ dead ] animals don’t evolve anything, even though evolution demands its creatures realize they need an improvement before that improvement begins to evolve.

Re “We all know […] begins to evolve.”

That sounds like something that guy on AtBC would say.

Richard B. Hoppe said:

Harold wrote

Another reason is simply the tendency to post-hoc rationalization. Ducks have webbed feet, therefore some ancient duck ancestor species must have “decided” that they wanted their offspring to swim and begun deliberately adding mutations to their genome that would tend toward a webbed foot phenotype.

It’s of some note that one of the handouts John Freshwater used said

We all know that [ dead ] animals don’t evolve anything, even though evolution demands its creatures realize they need an improvement before that improvement begins to evolve.

In other words, they’ll use Lamarckism as a straw man version of evolution to ridicule on Monday, and cheer for Lamarckism as a “dissent from evolution” on Tuesday.

There are exactly two consistent features to post-modern American/Anglosphere creationism.

1) Priority number one is to deny, distort, and censor evolution. Mutually contradictory approaches are fine, as long as they all deny evolution.

2) More controversially but unequivocally, where there is post-modern ID/creationism, there is nearly always right wing authoritarianism. I realize that this is annoying to conservatives who don’t deny science, but what we should recall is that it’s the “authoritarian” part that’s important. Various authoritarian movements have had various ideas about economics (usually extreme one way or the other - either ostensibe support of total collectivism or ostensible support of complete laissez-faire), but they’re all still authoritarians. Evolution denial is part of an intuitively understood set of dogmas that define a particular ideological group.

There are also random crackpots*. James Shapiro may be a coy adherent of the ideology associated with ID/creationism, a rare thing that Larry Moran and William Dembski both seem to suggest, or he may just be an egotistical crackpot trying to claim that his special genius makes him know more than everyone else. I suspect that Larry Moran (and in this rare case, Dembski) may be onto something, but no-one can be sure, at least not yet.

*Shapiro has done a vast amount of important and legitimate work, of course; it’s only his specific recent diatribes about “natural genetic engineering” that seem to be of the crackpot variety.

The interpretive philosophy of modern science (Naturalism) doesn’t allow any interpretation of evidence or conclusion that supports Supernaturalism (Genesis Flood). So all evidence and arguments offered in support of occurrence are dead-on-arrival.

DS said:

Thanks for reading the paper Robert. You know so many creationists just claim to read papers when they actually haven’t. It’s refreshing to find someone so honest and so excited about science and learning. Now Robert you will forgive me if I actually don’t believe that you read the paper. I know you said you did and I know you would never lie, unlike all the other creationists who defile this site.

So Robert, perhaps you would not mind explaining to everyone exactly why the radiolarian fossil record completely demolish the magic flood hypothesis.

The *assumptions* of your interpretive philosophy (Naturalism) don’t allow any interpretation of evidence that supports Genesis flood occurrence (Supernaturalism).

Exactly what explanation do you have for the multiple layers in an exact evolutionary sequence?

Question *assumes* a pro-evolutionary interpertation of evidence is, in fact, true.

All right, Ray. How do you explain the multiple strata, wherein denser and coarser sedimentary rock often overlays less-dense, finer rock, and sedimentary rock often overlays igneous?

On account of hydrogolic sorting from a single flood doesn’t explain it, Ray.

Ray Martinez said:

DS said:

Thanks for reading the paper Robert. You know so many creationists just claim to read papers when they actually haven’t. It’s refreshing to find someone so honest and so excited about science and learning. Now Robert you will forgive me if I actually don’t believe that you read the paper. I know you said you did and I know you would never lie, unlike all the other creationists who defile this site.

So Robert, perhaps you would not mind explaining to everyone exactly why the radiolarian fossil record completely demolish the magic flood hypothesis.

The *assumptions* of your interpretive philosophy (Naturalism) don’t allow any interpretation of evidence that supports Genesis flood occurrence (Supernaturalism).

Exactly what explanation do you have for the multiple layers in an exact evolutionary sequence?

Question *assumes* a pro-evolutionary interpretation of evidence is, in fact, true. Moreover said question assumes, in behalf of your opponent, a young Earth. The Bible clearly advocates an old Earth. Therefore layers piled on top of other layers does not, in itself, falsify a global flood 3140 BC.

Ray Martinez said:

The interpretive philosophy of modern science (Naturalism) doesn’t allow any interpretation of evidence or conclusion that supports Supernaturalism (Genesis Flood). So all evidence and arguments offered in support of occurrence are dead-on-arrival.

I have a little exercise for you; but it requires a little high school math and physics. Do you think you can handle it?

If all the water from the Flood came from outer space, how much energy got dumped on the Earth’s surface to cover it to the highest mountain? If that energy got dumped in a time span of 40 days, how much energy per unit time per unit area does that turn out to be?

If you don’t believe the water came from outer space but came from with the lithosphere instead, how hot was it, and how much energy got dumped onto the Earth’s surface in this case? As in the first case, now much energy per unit time per unit area does that turn out to be?

If you don’t like either of the above scenarios, then tell us how much energy was required to rearrange the surface of the Earth from its pre-Flood shape to its current shape? As before, how much energy per unit time per unit area does that turn out to be?

So, whatever the scenario, the next question becomes, “How did the Ark survive this energy dump?”

I am pretty sure that high school math and physics are way over your head; but just in case I am wrong, I think we would all like to see a definitive calculation from an ID/creationist that explains how the Ark survived.

How much energy did God have to shield the Ark from?

Ray Martinez said:

DS said:

Thanks for reading the paper Robert. You know so many creationists just claim to read papers when they actually haven’t. It’s refreshing to find someone so honest and so excited about science and learning. Now Robert you will forgive me if I actually don’t believe that you read the paper. I know you said you did and I know you would never lie, unlike all the other creationists who defile this site.

So Robert, perhaps you would not mind explaining to everyone exactly why the radiolarian fossil record completely demolish the magic flood hypothesis.

The *assumptions* of your interpretive philosophy (Naturalism) don’t allow any interpretation of evidence that supports Genesis flood occurrence (Supernaturalism).

Exactly what explanation do you have for the multiple layers in an exact evolutionary sequence?

Question *assumes* a pro-evolutionary interpertation of evidence is, in fact, true.

Well Ray, then perhaps you can explain for us exactly what would be expected if the magic flood actually occurred. Then you can explain to us what is actually observed. Then you can explain to us why the two are completely different. Then you can explain to us exactly what assumption you are making that allows you to disregard all of the evidence. Thanks in advance for your response.

Mike Elzinga said:

Ray Martinez said:

The interpretive philosophy of modern science (Naturalism) doesn’t allow any interpretation of evidence or conclusion that supports Supernaturalism (Genesis Flood). So all evidence and arguments offered in support of occurrence are dead-on-arrival.

I have a little exercise for you; but it requires a little high school math and physics. Do you think you can handle it?

If all the water from the Flood came from outer space, how much energy got dumped on the Earth’s surface to cover it to the highest mountain? If that energy got dumped in a time span of 40 days, how much energy per unit time per unit area does that turn out to be?

If you don’t believe the water came from outer space but came from with the lithosphere instead, how hot was it, and how much energy got dumped onto the Earth’s surface in this case? As in the first case, now much energy per unit time per unit area does that turn out to be?

If you don’t like either of the above scenarios, then tell us how much energy was required to rearrange the surface of the Earth from its pre-Flood shape to its current shape? As before, how much energy per unit time per unit area does that turn out to be?

So, whatever the scenario, the next question becomes, “How did the Ark survive this energy dump?”

I am pretty sure that high school math and physics are way over your head; but just in case I am wrong, I think we would all like to see a definitive calculation from an ID/creationist that explains how the Ark survived.

How much energy did God have to shield the Ark from?

Relevance?

DS said:

Ray Martinez said:

DS said:

Thanks for reading the paper Robert. You know so many creationists just claim to read papers when they actually haven’t. It’s refreshing to find someone so honest and so excited about science and learning. Now Robert you will forgive me if I actually don’t believe that you read the paper. I know you said you did and I know you would never lie, unlike all the other creationists who defile this site.

So Robert, perhaps you would not mind explaining to everyone exactly why the radiolarian fossil record completely demolish the magic flood hypothesis.

The *assumptions* of your interpretive philosophy (Naturalism) don’t allow any interpretation of evidence that supports Genesis flood occurrence (Supernaturalism).

Exactly what explanation do you have for the multiple layers in an exact evolutionary sequence?

Question *assumes* a pro-evolutionary interpretation of evidence is, in fact, true.

Well Ray, then perhaps you can explain for us exactly what would be expected if the [Genesis] flood actually occurred.

A surface covered mostly in water (4/4 to 3/4).

Then you can explain to us what is actually observed.

A surface that is 3/4s water.

Then you can explain to us why the two are completely different. Then you can explain to us exactly what assumption you are making that allows you to disregard all of the evidence. Thanks in advance for your response.

All evidence and arguments offered in support of occurrence are, based on the assumptions of Naturalism (your interpretive philosophy), dead-on-arrival.

Ray Martinez said:

Relevance?

Your one-word answer just gave us a precise measure of your level of education; and it is a clear demonstrated of the fact that you are totally incapable of comprehending even the most elementary calculations that debunk your flood myth.

Ray Martinez said:

All evidence and arguments offered in support of occurrence are, based on the assumptions of Naturalism (your interpretive philosophy), dead-on-arrival.

You just repeated yourself.

Those calculations you so “deftly” avoided demonstrate the NON-occurrence of the flood.

So, you can’t do high school level math and science, and now we know your reading comprehension is somewhere down at the elementary school level.

I’m guessing you were home schooled in order to keep you from being exposed to science and secular reading. Read only bible stories and memorized verses, you did. The picture of your education is becoming clearer.

Mike Elzinga said:

Ray Martinez said:

Relevance?

Your one-word answer just gave us a precise measure of your level of education; and it is a clear demonstrated of the fact that you are totally incapable of comprehending even the most elementary calculations that debunk your flood myth.

Your question or challenge is obviously rhetorical. You ended your original post to me implying that a miracle had to take place in order for the Ark to survive. Yes, that’s true. Many miracles had to occur for the Ark to survive. The context of the Genesis Flood is Genesis 1:1 and very many other Divine works (miracles). So again, what’s the point, Mike?

For as it sits now: you appear as you judge me to be (ignorant).

Mike Elzinga said:

Ray Martinez said:

All evidence and arguments offered in support of occurrence are, based on the assumptions of Naturalism (your interpretive philosophy), dead-on-arrival.

You just repeated yourself.

Those calculations you so “deftly” avoided demonstrate the NON-occurrence of the flood.

So, you can’t do high school level math and science, and now we know your reading comprehension is somewhere down at the elementary school level.

I’m guessing you were home schooled in order to keep you from being exposed to science and secular reading. Read only bible stories and memorized verses, you did. The picture of your education is becoming clearer.

Since the assumptions of your interpretive philosophy (Naturalism) don’t allow any interpretation of evidence that supports Supernaturalism (global flood), your non-occurrence conclusion was predetermined.

Ray Martinez said:

So again, what’s the point, Mike?

For as it sits now: you appear as you judge me to be (ignorant).

Yes; so ignorant that you can’t possibly get the point.

You sit at a computer typing all this, and you still don’t get it.

QED.

Mike Elzinga said:

Ray Martinez said:

So again, what’s the point, Mike?

For as it sits now: you appear as you judge me to be (ignorant).

Yes; so ignorant that you can’t possibly get the point.

You sit at a computer typing all this, and you still don’t get it.

QED.

Isn’t it true, Mike: The assumptions of your interpretive philosophy (Naturalism) don’t allow any interpretation of evidence that supports Supernaturalism (global flood), therefore all of your non-occurrence conclusions are, in fact, predetermined?

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This page contains a single entry by Richard B. Hoppe published on December 7, 2012 1:01 PM.

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