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Posted by on Oct 19, 2012 in Music | 43 comments

There is no God (Glory Hallelujah)

A local boy to me (Winchester in Hampshire) is becoming fairly well-known on the alternative folk circuit. This is a classic. Uplifting and… well… true. Let me hear you say it… “there is noooo God!”

 

 

 

Need to get me this album.

 

 

  • JohnM

    Hallelujah means praise God. Why would one use that in that context? Hehe.

    But anyway…

    Is that an example of someone who merely lacks faith in God?

    Or is that an example of “someone” who has said in his heart, There is no God?

    My response would simply be:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6RGcb7alSk0

  • frisbee_kid

    Hello, seeing
    that Kevin won’t let me respond to you on his blog, I will post it on yours:

          
     

          
     

    ·     

    Sorry
    if I am going over old ground here, as I have not read every comment.

    I have
    to pick Frisbee_kid up on something here (the man does rational disservice to
    the sport of ultimate, which I used to play a lot of).

    It seems
    he is claiming E Coli have built in enviromental cues.

     

    No. I am
    repeating what Dr Spetner wrote in “Not By Chance”- “built-in responses to
    environmental cues”

     

    This
    is patently ridiculous as the environments, given the sheer volume of specimens
    in the same environment, have remained consistent.

     

    Sometimes
    remaining consistent is the best solution. You don’t want evreyone doing the
    same thing. You still need diversity

     

    The cues, if they are deigned in, would react, like any situation-action
    machine, to a given input in order to produce a given output.

    Then
    living organisms are not simply “situation-reaction machines”

    This has clearly not happened since it took generation upon generation for the
    citrate ability to materialise.

    Because
    they did NOT start with the originally designed strain. They were using a
    beaten-up copy so it took some time. Also the pressure to change in that
    fashion was low.

     

     

    This is only predictable on a randomised model of change to the organism. There
    really is no other rational explanation (let’s face it, kid’s theory is nothing
    more than a definition of ad hoc) for the sudden and apparently random
    development of the new ability.

    It is
    simple causality. I can only see kid’s reactions here in light of a
    presuppositional approach to disbelieving evolution. Without that outrageous
    bias, evolution provides the obvious answer.

    Looking
    at what actually happened-> potentiating mutations, followed by a tandem
    duplication, followed by refinemnet, is exactly what Dr Spetner wrote about in “Not
    By Chance”.

     

    Look,
    I was never a particularly avid believer or non-believer until more recent
    years. In fact, I used to be a Christian. But I learnt science without thinking
    I had a need to fulfill a conclusion that I had already made. Which is why I
    simply cannot understand people who deny evolution, apart from in the context
    of necessity due to other beliefs. Sad really.

     

    What is
    sad is people like you carrying around a strawman. People can accept evolution
    and still dismiss evolutionism, ie the claim that all of life’s diversity owes
    its collective common ancestry to some unknown populations of prokaryotic-like
    organisms via accumulations of genetic accidents. People can
    accept anti-biotic resistance without accepting human-chimp common ancestry.

    See also:

    Intelligent Design is NOT anti-evolution

    • Andy_Schueler

      Sometimes remaining consistent is the best solution. You don’t want evreyone doing the same thing. You still need diversity

      Diversity is not beneficial in a perfectly stable environment (which never occurs in the real world, but Lenski´s group is simulating one). If the E. coli cells were acting according to built-in responses to environmental cues   (what is your evidence for this claim btw ?), all strains should show the same evolutionary trajectory (or at least the same trajectories wrt to adaptive mutations), but they do not. 

      Because they did NOT start with the originally designed strain.

      What was the “originally designed strain” and what is your evidence that there was one ? 

      They were using a beaten-up copy so it took some time.

      All strains in Lenskis´s lab are derived from the same ancestral population so if your claim is true that they are “beaten-up copies” (what exactly does that mean and where´s your evidence for that claim ?), they are all equally “beaten up”. If they were all equally “beaten-up” initially when the experiment started, due to being descended from the same ancestral population, why are the evolutionary trajectories to the fixation of the mutations necessary for citrate incorporation different in all strains ? Equally “beaten-up” would imply an equal “ability to respond to enviromental cues” (assuming they indeed do have this ability) – but this is quite clearly not the case. 

      Also the pressure to change in that fashion was low.

      Define “pressure”.

      • frisbee_kid

        “Pressure”- whatever is in the enviroment that can influence fittness.

        Diversity is not beneficial in a perfectly stable environment (which never occurs in the real world – outside a lab, but Lenski´s group is simulating one).

        Why, because you say so?

        If the E. coli cells were acting according to built-in responses to environmental cues (what is your evidence for this claim btw ?), all strains should show the same evolutionary trajectory (or at least the same trajectories wrt adaptive mutations), but they do not.

        My evidence is the mutations it took- potentiating mutations, followed by a TANDEM duplication, followed by refinement. And all strains would not be working towards the same solution because perhaps there is more than one solution. As I said the populations used were not the originally designed bacteria.

        What is your evidence natural selection didit? Well obvioulsy it couldn’t because no advantage was had until the whole thing happened- that is the poteniating mutations did nothing and only after another lucky just-so complex mutation took place was any advantage offered.

        • Andy_Schueler

          Why, because you say so?

          The benefit of diversity is, that it provides standing genetic variation, which is overall beneficial for a population because it makes adaptations to a changing environment more efficient. In a perfectly stable environment, diversity is not necessary at all (example: monocultures of crops are extremely efficient, but extremely vulnerable to changes in the environment).

          My evidence is the mutations it took- potentiating mutations, followed by a TANDEM duplication, followed by refinement.

          How exactly is that evidence for a programmed reaction to environmental cues ? Especially given the fact that the precise evolutionary trajectories are completely different in all strains ? 
          Also, could you please define what you think a “tandem duplication” is ? 

          And all strains would not be working towards the same solution because perhaps there is more than one solution. 

          Some strains did not find the “solution” at all so far…. Also, since all strains are living in an identical environment – why would a “pre-programmed response to an environmental cue” lead to different solutions ? Do you imagine this like a software program that generates a random number and proceeds differently depending on which number it generates ? (If not, how would this work ? And if so, how is this practically any different from the concept of random mutations ?)

          What is your evidence natural selection didit?

          When did I say “natural selection didit” ? 

          Well obvioulsy it couldn’t because no advantage was had until the whole thing happened

          That the Cit+ ability is based on at least two neutral mutations was already known back in 2008 when Lenski´s lab published the initial results on the Cit+ strains. 

          • http://www.skepticblogs.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce

            Beat me to it on the environmental cues point.

            And what is that assertion defence with no substance, with regards to ERVs?

    • http://www.skepticblogs.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce

      “Then

      living organisms are not simply “situation-reaction machines””
      You need to show how not. How does an amoeba not work in simple inpits to produce an output? Do you think they have free will to deliberate their choices? C’mon, man, don’t just say stuff kneejerk because you think it helps your cause!

      • frisbee_kid

        I don’t just say stuff. As I said “Not By Chance” came out in 1997 so I have had 15 years to think about it.

    • http://www.skepticblogs.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce

      And endogenous retorviruses occur exactly how? There is sooo much evidence for common ancestry it is not funny.

      Try reading Shubin’s You r Inner Fish for a start.

      • frisbee_kid

        I read “Your Inner Fish”.  Not impressed. For one he got the timing wrong as tetrapod tracks put the arrival of tetrapods before Tiktaalik. For another he conflates evidence for a common design with evidence for common ancestry.

        And ERVs are not all they are cracked up to be. You should apply a little of your skepticism to your position.

        • Andy_Schueler

          For one he got the timing wrong as tetrapod tracks put the arrival of tetrapods before Tiktaalik.

          No, he did not get the timing wrong, it rather seems to be the case that you have a very common misconceptions about cladistics. Speciation means that a population of one species (in this case the common ancestor of Tiktaalik and Tetrapods) splits into two, which stop exchanging genetic material and proceed to evolve independently from each other. One of those populations is ancestral to contemporary tetrapods, and the other produced (among other species) Tiktaalik and eventually died out (the fate of most lineages in the course of history). Shubin never claimed that Tiktaalik is an ancestor of contemporary tetrapods, it is rather a very early (on a geological scale) cousin of the common ancestor of all tetrapods. 

          For another he conflates evidence for a common design with evidence for common ancestry.

          This creationist objection has been so often debunked for so many years… 
          1. The theory of universal common descent makes very strong predictions about the patterns of similaties and dissimilatities between species and only a tiny subset of all theoretically possible observations would be compatible with common descent (all that form a strict nested hierarchy of similarity) – every single fossil or new extant species that is discovered is an opportunity to disprove common descent. “Common design” on the other hand would be compatible with every conceivable observation, because the nature of the “designer” and it´s powers and motivations are 100% unknown. 
          2. The theory of universal common descent predicts the same pattern of similarities for all features of living things – no matter whether they are beneficial, neutral or deleterious.  While “common design” could only explain such things with a truckload of ad hoc assumptions about the powers and nature of the “Designer”. 

          And ERVs are not all they are cracked up to be. 

          What do you think they are “cracked up to be” ? 

  • http://www.skepticblogs.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce

    @Andy_Schueler:disqus 
    Is it not annoying when creationists trot out the same tired old stuff whilst ignoring the mass of literature which has already debunked it?

  • frisbee_kid

    Ok, before going deeper down the rabbit hole-

    My position is “as far as anyone knows” this change is due to “built-in responses to environmental cues” because this chain of events was as Dr Spetner described in “Not By Chance”.

    Tandem duplication- results in two copies head to tail, no? This occurred in the EXISTING citrate transport protein. The protein that gets cranked out in the absence of oxygen, ie in an anaerobic environment. 

    The new position put it under control of a different promoter, one not controlled by the presence of oxygen, which set about making copies, just as the original would in an anaerobic environment

    The organism could already metabolize citrus.  The presence of oxygen just stops the transport protein from being produced.

    That said I never said nor implied the response was pre-programmed. There is a problem and then there are searches for any possible solutions. It would be like a targeted search- like Dawkins “weasel”- every run will give you different solutions to the same problem.

    • Andy_Schueler

      My position is “as far as anyone knows” this change is due to “built-in responses to environmental cues” because this chain of events was as Dr Spetner described in “Not By Chance”.

      This does not answer my question. What is the logical connection ? How is ”the evolution of a novel trait in a population of E. coli cells was found out to be based on the fixation of several mutations which are neutral or nearly neutral by themselves” evidence for “there are built-in responses to environmental cues in organisms” ?

       

      That said I never said nor implied the response was pre-programmed. There is a problem and then there are searches for any possible solutions. It would be like a targeted search- like Dawkins “weasel”- every run will give you different solutions to the same problem.

      So what exactly do you mean by “built-in response to environmental cues” then ? And whatever it is, how exactly is it different from the notion of mutations being random with respect to fitness changes ? 
      If you say it is like a run of the METHINKSITISWEASEL program by RD, then Lenski´s results would disprove the idea – a search in the METHINKSITISWEASEL program will always find the *same* solution, the runs only differ in the trajectories to this particular solution (i.e. the solution is pre-determined, but the way the solution will be implemented is not). Neither Lenski´s experiment, not any other experiment that has ever been carried out with living (instead of digital organisms) has ever provided evidence that genetic solutions are pre-determined, the evidence if overwhelming that evolution is NOT a targeted search. 

      • http://www.skepticblogs.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce

        @google-8099882c039d23abd84d1b0244de0872:disqus 
        This is simple causality. You cannot expect a different outcome with exactly the same inputs, which is what you imply. If something is pre-programmed then whenever that input  is stimulated, the output follows. This is what RD’s programme will show. However, the E Coli did not suddenly develop the new ability when the environment gave a certain input. It took time. Moreover, it did not happen in all the strains. I cannot see how you can smuggle in pre-programming within the framework of the Lenski experiment. Have you looked into how the experiment was designed?

        See this excellent video:
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vUhYGgtwNkE

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/ICM7EK24ZEP6AAGMMBDRDHRYJE John

          Yes it took time- that is because the bacteria used were A) not the originally designed bacteria and B) the selection pressure was not that hard to drive the change.

          • Andy_Schueler

            Yes it took time- that is because the bacteria used were A) not the originally designed bacteria and B) the selection pressure was not that hard to drive the change.

            1. Still no evidence that there ever was something like an “orginally designed” E.coli. 
            2. Different selection pressures are only relevant for the fixation times of mutations that actually do change fitness, they are completely irrelevant for neutral ones – the potentiating mutations in this case however were neutral as has been demonstrated in the last two sections of the results of Lenski´s most recent paper on this issue. 
            3. You have ignored all objections to your idea that there is something like a “designed / programmed response to environmental cues”:
            http://www.skepticink.com/tippling/2012/10/19/there-is-no-god-glory-hallelujah/#comment-688239100
            http://www.skepticink.com/tippling/2012/10/19/there-is-no-god-glory-hallelujah/#comment-688009520
            http://www.skepticink.com/tippling/2012/10/19/there-is-no-god-glory-hallelujah/#comment-688241318
            why ? 

          • http://www.skepticblogs.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce

            “Yes it took time- that is because the bacteria used were A) not the originally designed bacteria and B) the selection pressure was not that hard to drive the change.”

            So if they were evolved bacteria then how were they ‘pre-programmed’. If not, how were they different and why in order to have different pre-programmed cues? Also, how did some strains of the same culture evolve the new ability whilst one evolved it? You make no sense.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/ICM7EK24ZEP6AAGMMBDRDHRYJE John

        It finds the same solution via DIFFERENT pathways. And I never said anything about being pre-determined.

        • Andy_Schueler

          It finds the same solution via DIFFERENT pathways. And I never said anything about being pre-determined.

          You have conveniently ignored every single question and objection in the comment you replied to. Please read it again and try to address the questions and objections if you want to discuss this issue.

  • frisbee_kid

    Endogenous Retroviruses (ERVS)- A Case for Common Descent or Another Evolutionary Blunder?

    Just sayin’ there is more than one side of the story and in most cases it comes down to “well it looks like it was an ERV to me”

    • http://www.skepticblogs.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce

      Brilliant. The conclusion, a short 4 lines, is dependent on 2 ‘mights’. Using simple epistemological methods, the probability of it being correct, without even reading the article is, by the author’s own admission, less than 50%.

      Nice work.

      I suggest you read this:
      Three Layers of Endogenous Retroviral Evidence for the Evolutionary Model
      http://www.evolutionarymodel.com/ervs.htm

      and the rebuttal to an attempted critique by Evolution News and Views:

      Responding to the “Evolution News & Views” articles addressing my essay on the ERV evidence for common ancestry
      http://www.evolutionarymodel.com/evolutionnews.htm

      I suggest doing research on evolution through evolutionary biologists…

  • frisbee_kid

    OK a non-believer will review Neil Shubin’s book “Your Inner Fish”. I have blogged about this being a failed prediction and this time I will add more detail from Neil to support my claim.

    Chapter 1 is the set up for Neil’s journey to find the origin of limbed organisms. That’s right, according to Neil he was “interested in understanding the origin of limbed animals”, not just any ole transitional form. And he said, wrongly as it turns out, that to find the origins of limbed animals “we can now restrict our search to rocks that are roughly 375 million to 380 million years old”.

    First, the set-up:

    “In a nutshell, the ‘fish–tetrapod transition’ usually refers to the origin, from their fishy ancestors, of creatures with four legs bearing digits (fingers and toes), and with joints that permit the animals to walk on land. This event took place between about 385 and 360 million years ago toward the end of the period of time known as the Devonian. The Devonian is often referred to as the ‘Age of Fishes,’ as fish form the bulk of the vertebrate fossil record for this time.”- Jennifer Clack, The Fish–Tetrapod Transition: New Fossils and Interpretations; “Evolution: Education and Outreach”, 2009, Volume 2, Number 2, Pages 213-223

    Got that- “the transition” refers to an event, a specific event that occurred between two specified time periods, a time when there were fish and no tetrapods and the time when there were fish and tetrapods.

    With that now firmly established we return to “Your Inner Fish” chapter 1 where Shubin discusses what he was looking for- hint: evidence for the transition, ie the event:

    Let’s return to our problem of how to find relatives of the first fish to walk on land. In our grouping scheme, these creatures are somewhere between the “Everythings” and the “Everythings with limbs”. Map this to what we know of the rocks, and there is strong geological evidence that the period from 380 million to 365 million years ago is the critical time. The younger rocks in that range, those about 360 million years old, include diverse kinds of fossilized animals that we would recognize as amphibians or reptiles. My colleague Jenny Clark at Cambridge University and others have uncovered amphibians from rocks in Greenland that are about 365 million years old. With their necks, their ears, and their four legs, they do not look like fish. But in rocks that are about 385 million years old, we find whole fish that look like, well, fish. They have fins. conical heads, and scales; and they have no necks. Given this, it is probably no great surprise that we should focus on rocks about 375 million years old to find evidence of the transition between fish and land-living animals.- Neil Subin pages 9-10 (bold and italics added)

    OK he did it just exactly as described, bracketed the dates. However his dates were wrong, which means he did not find evidence for the transition, which occurred many millions of years earlier.

    But anyway near the end of chapter 1 Neil sez:

    It took us six years to find it, but this fossil confirmed a prediction of paleontology: not only was the new fish an intermediate between two different types of animal, but we had found it also in the right time period in the earth’s history and in the right ancient environment. (italics in original)

    Oops. As it turns out Tiktaalik was not found in the right time period for Neil said he was looking for.

    In order to find what he was looking for, evidence of the transition, he needed to focus on rocks 400 million years old, as the new data puts terapods in existence about 395 million years ago.

    Tetrapod trackways from the early Middle Devonian period of Poland

    • http://www.skepticblogs.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce

      Sorry, let’s get this right, what is your point? Is your point that Shubin was 15 million years out? If so, this is how science works. Performance, feedback, revision.

      http://youtu.be/hod20AzYB4o

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/ICM7EK24ZEP6AAGMMBDRDHRYJE John

        He was looking for something specific and he did NOT find it. That is my point.

        • Andy_Schueler

          He was looking for something specific and he did NOT find it. That is my point.

          He was looking for ”relatives of the first fish to walk on land.”, which he found, and he expected them to be ”intermediate between two different types of animal”, which it was. 

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/ICM7EK24ZEP6AAGMMBDRDHRYJE John

            No, he said he was looking for evidence for the transition. There is no reason to look for transitional forms many millions of years AFTER the transition occurred. If that were so then he could jus look anywhere that had that same environment- any strata that was younger than say 385 million years. Why did he choose his brackets so carefully?  

            His whole entuire set-up, chapter one, depended on the transition occurring between 365-385 mya. He was wrong. Too bad

          • Andy_Schueler

            No, he said he was looking for evidence for the transition. There is no reason to look for transitional forms many millions of years AFTER the transition occurred.

            Of course there is a reason, any sister group is informative for the reconstruction of the phylogenetic history and the closer the sister group is to the MRCA of tetrapods the better. “Many million years” after the transition is still closer to the transition than any other fossil that has been found so far and >380 million years closer than any extant species.

            If that were so then he could jus look anywhere that had that same environment- any strata that was younger than say 385 million years. Why did he choose his brackets so carefully?  

            He used the best data that was available at the time to pinpoint the emergence of tetrapods – and this turned out to be too young by a few million years, how does this change any of the conclusions that have been presented based on the analysis of Tiktaalik ? It still is a very close sister group (just not as close as they expected in 2006) and shows exactly the “intermediate between two different types of animal” that Shubin expected to find. 

        • Andy_Schueler

          Btw, who exactly are you / which profiles do you use ? You seem to comment here under the nyms “John” and “frisbee_kid” and I´ve seen someone refer to you as “Joe” in another thread – why don´t you just settle for a single profile ? 

    • Andy_Schueler

      Chapter 1 is the set up for Neil’s journey to find the origin of limbed organisms. That’s right, according to Neil he was “interested in understanding the origin of limbed animals”, not just any ole transitional form.

      Yes, and Tiktaalik was indeed spectacularly helpful in understanding the origin of tetrapods.  

      With that now firmly established we return to “Your Inner Fish” chapter 1 where Shubin discusses what he was looking for- hint: evidence for the transition, ie the event:

      Let’s return to our problem of how to find relatives of the first fish to walk on land…..

      And he did indeed find such relatives – Titktaalik is an early cousin of the common ancestor of all tetrapods (not as early as Shubin thought, but still ~375 million years earlier than any extant species). Shubin´s conclusions based on the found and analysis of Tiktaalik still stand.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/ICM7EK24ZEP6AAGMMBDRDHRYJE John

        Shubin’s entire chapter one is a lie- He said he was looking for evidence of the transition, not some early cousin.

        Geez Andy, did you read the book?

        • Andy_Schueler

          Early cousins *are* evidence for the transition and early cousins *are* close “relatives of the first fish to walk on land.” and it´s morphology is indeed “intermediate between two different types of animal”. 
          What do you expect ? The overwhelming majority of all animals don´t fossilize and the overwhelming majority of all lineages go extinct – the probability of finding early cousins of one particular lineage that still lives on nowadays is *much* higher than finding an ancestor who belongs to this exact lineage. That´s paleontology 101 – and it´s exactly how the found was presented – and all conclusions that have been derived from the analysis of Tiktaalik are still valid.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/ICM7EK24ZEP6AAGMMBDRDHRYJE John

    Andy,

    I don’t know what is giong on wrt logins- I just post.

    The problem to be solved is “how we we better survive in this environment?”  Getting to the citrate for food is one solution but one that relies on a supply of citrate. And how to get to the citrate is not pre-programmed.

    The bacteria are designed to evolve. Now you may say there isn’t any evidence for that, but bacteria exist, there isn’t any evidence necessity and chance can do it and the fit the design criteria. But yes if bacteria were not designed then I would never say that there were built-in reponses to environmental cues.

    Also, once you consider that the alternative to that is sheer dumb luck, why wouldn’t one at least think it a possibility?

    • Andy_Schueler

      The problem to be solved is “how we we better survive in this environment?”  Getting to the citrate for food is one solution but one that relies on a supply of citrate. And how to get to the citrate is not pre-programmed.

      Again, you did not respond to any of Jonathan´s and my objections and questions regarding “built-in responses to environmental cues”:
      http://www.skepticink.com/tippling/2012/10/19/there-is-no-god-glory-hallelujah/#comment-688239100http://www.skepticink.com/tippling/2012/10/19/there-is-no-god-glory-hallelujah/#comment-688009520http://www.skepticink.com/tippling/2012/10/19/there-is-no-god-glory-hallelujah/#comment-688241318
      Also, again, if by “built-in” you don´t mean “pre-programmed”, then what exactly do you mean ? And how exactly is it different from the concept of mutations being random wrt fitness ? 

      The bacteria are designed to evolve. Now you may say there isn’t any evidence for that, but bacteria exist, there isn’t any evidence necessity and chance can do it

      Actually, there is. You might not believe in universal common descent, it still happens to be one of the best supported scientific theories that have ever been developed, overturning universal common descent requires some pretty impressive evidence and creationists have never managed to come up with any. And even if there would be no evidence, “I don´t know where bacteria came from, therefore they were designed” is fallacious reasoning,  

      and the fit the design criteria.

       
      There is no such thing as “design criteria”. If you are referring to things like CSI or  Dembski´s “explanatory filter” – these things have barely been discussed in the scientific literature at all, and when they were it was only to demonstrate how these concepts are completely incoherent and fallacious (and this was almost exclusively done by Mathematicians and Statisticians, including one of the developers of the NFL theorems, Biologists were never even interested in Dembski´s ideas (nor anyone else for that matter – Pathologists, Archaeologists and the SETI people were never interested in his ideas and the SETI people even explicitly explained how their research has nothing to do with Dembski´s ideas))

      Also, once you consider that the alternative to that is sheer dumb luck, why wouldn’t one at least think it a possibility?

      The potentiating mutations were indeed “dumb luck” (in the sense that they were fixated by neutral drift) as has been exhaustively demonstrated by Lenski´s group, the mutations that were based on that improved fitness and could therefore be selected for (i.e. not dumb luck).

      • http://www.skepticblogs.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce

        Andy, he really DOES need to explain environmental cues in light of what we have said!

        • Andy_Schueler

          Yeah, that would be interesting… It seems that his “built-in response to environmental cues” idea is based on this book:
          http://www.amazon.de/Not-Chance-Shattering-Modern-Evolution/dp/1880582244
          I´ve never heard of the author before (and a quick check at Google Scholar and the web of science turned up no citations beyond some blogs and creationist journals). 

          • http://www.skepticblogs.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce
          • Andy_Schueler

            There is a synopsis of the book here:
            http://www.aish.com/ci/sam/48936977.html

            Seems to be mostly based on two pillars:
            1. The old nonsense about “all mutations leading to a loss of information and never to a gain of information” 

            On experimental grounds, there are no known random mutations that have added any genetic information to the organism. This may seem surprising at first, but a list of the best examples of mutations offered by evolutionists shows that each of them loses genetic information rather than gains it.

            and 2. The argument that mutations are non-random that John seems to refer to:

            There is, however, both direct and indirect evidence that some evolution has occurred. How did it occur?
            It is suggested that although significant evolution cannot occur by random mutations, it could occur by non-random mutations. Non-random here means that the environment itself influences what mutations can occur. There is extensive evidence for evolution by non-random mutations — evidence that spans life forms from bacteria through vertebrates.
            Whereas standard neo-Darwinian theory relies on point mutations that are essentially mistakes in replicating the DNA, there are other kinds of mutations that are not mistakes.
            Genetic rearrangements are complex genetic changes. They are carried out with precision and are driven by sophisticated cellular mechanisms. These mutations appear to be triggered by cues from the environment and they do not appear to be the product only of chance.
            These genetic rearrangements may be part of a built-in mechanism that permits a line of organisms to adapt to a new environment. Part of the genetic program of the organism seems to be a set of genetic switches that can be triggered by the environment. These enable a heritable switch in the organism to one of a limited set of alternate forms. An interesting feature of this mechanism is that it can cause a population to adapt rapidly to a new environment.

            => if this synopsis accurately reflects the content of the book, then it does indeed seem to argue for “pre-programmed” “complex genetic changes”…. 
            This is rethorically brilliant (mutations never increase information! unless they do…. if that happens, it´s because they were built-in by a designer!) but of course complete nonsense.

          • http://www.skepticblogs.com/tippling/ Jonathan MS Pearce

            Something that should be that in depth, and something which would potentially undermine one of the most celebrated theories in science should be the domain of a biologist, methinks, and not a physicist.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_NZMJ7JRYKH7WR6YTXJGG3PU65E John Grove

    Look folks, the debate on whether or not evolution is a fact has been over for over 150 years. There is no debate as to the veracity of evolution. It’s as much a fact as the Holocaust.

    “Life is too short to occupy oneself with the slaying of the slain more then once.”
    T. H. Huxley, 1861

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_NZMJ7JRYKH7WR6YTXJGG3PU65E John Grove

    Examples of beneficial mutations
    http://www.gate.net/~rwms/EvoMutations.html

  • gobbledegook78

    frisbee_kid and john are joe g (joe gallien). He uses several user names and causes trouble wherever he goes. This is his blog:

    http://intelligentreasoning.blogspot.com/

  • Eugen Forums

    Table VIII: Torts or Delicts

    1a. If any person had sung or composed against another person a song such as was causing slander or insult to another . . . he should be clubbed to death.

    .

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