• IDist commenter bets my co-writer $10,000. And loses. What to do?!

    There has been a mammoth conversation going on over on another post,  Creationist stakes $10,000 on contest between Bible and evolution. Regular IDist commenter, JoeG, is a major proponent of pseudoscientific guided evolution. That means to say he broadly agrees to evolution, but claims there is no evidence – it is unguided and there is plenty of evidence that it is guided. This is despite the fact that he neglects to ever provide any of this evidence whilst at the same time demanding that we provide positive evidence that evolution is unguided. I am no evolutionary biologist, which is why I have declared that this is like asking to prove a negative, such as proving that unicorns don’t exist – we perhaps can’t prove a lack of guidance, though we can infer an awful lot and look at probabilistic arguments.

    Anyway, the great part of this story is that my co-writer here at ATP is Andy Schueler. For those of you who don’t know him, he is a molecular evolutionary biologist. I love watching him in arguments about evolution because he really does know his stuff. He is awesome.

    So, on this other thread, there is a big set of nebulous arguments going on – well worth looking over to see how the mind of an IDist works. They make lots of demands, give huge amounts of assertions, make wild claims. But they never answer questions directed at them, never substantiate claims.

    So, one such exchange was about nested hierarchies. These, for those who don’t know, are defined as:

    Taxonomy is based on the fact that all organisms are related to each other in nested hierarchies based on shared characteristics. Most existing species can be organized rather easily in a nested hierarchical classification. This is evident from the Linnaean classification scheme. Based on shared derived characters, closely related organisms can be placed in one group (such as a genus), several genera can be grouped together into one family, several families can be grouped together into an order, etc.[39] The existence of these nested hierarchies was recognized by many biologists before Darwin, but he showed that his theory of evolution with its branching pattern of common descent could explain them.[39][40] Darwin described how common descent could provide a logical basis for classification:[41]

    All the foregoing rules and aids and difficulties in classification are explained, if I do not greatly deceive myself, on the view that the natural system is founded on descent with modification; that the characters which naturalists consider as showing true affinity between any two or more species, are those which have been inherited from a common parent, and, in so far, all true classification is genealogical; that community of descent is the hidden bond which naturalists have been unconsciously seeking, …
    Charles DarwinOn the Origin of Species, page 577

    So there is this discussion about nested hierarchies on the thread. JoeG, given the subject matter of the OP, muttered these immortal words:

    An Army is a nested hiearchy. Just about anything can be placed into a nested hierarchy. However with gradual evolution we would expect to see a smooth blending of deining traits, and that would ruin a nested hierarchy based on traits.

    Linneaus, a Creationist, made his nested hierarchy based on a common design.

    And I will put up $10,000 US to prove that I understand nested hierarchies better than you.

    BTW, chump, we do NOT see a strict nested hierarchy with prokaryotes. Ya see HGT ruins it. You lose, again.

    Before I talk about the content per se, let me say a little thing about etiquette. Firstly, at my blog, I invite people here of all different worldviews to discuss things with humility and with composure and without unnecessary rudeness. Andy is a molecular biologist who works with these ideas every day. Calling him a chump is seriously miscalculated and unnecessary.

    Andy’s retort:

    An Army is a nested hiearchy. Just about anything can be placed into a nested hierarchy.

    No. In fact, most things that are designed can not be placed objectively in a nested hierarchy (hint: whether the distribution of features is hierarchical or not can be precisely quantified and statistically tested) . Take cars or watches, or computers for example (because technological novelties (e.g. Airbags or Navigation systems for cars) could be included in ALL models, and their inclusion usually reflects the price of the product, not how close it is related to another product (no matter how you measure “relation” – common manufacturer, common inspirations etc. – all lead to the same result)).
    Such a free mixing of features that is not constrained by a relationship like common descent would lead to trees that are not significantly hierarchical or even anti-hierarchical.
    Just try it for yourself, define a similarity matrix for cars (or computers, or cell phones) in the same way Biologists define one based on morphology (or development or what have you), then infer a UPGMA or NJ (you could also use ML or bayesian statistics, but you would have to customize the statistical model yourself for such a non-standard application) phylogenetic tree for this matrix (virtually all software for this is freely available, use phylip for example) – and calculate the consistency index (or any comparable measurement for which a test statistic is available). Then compare this to the consistency index for the trees of ten randomly chosen gene families and for the trees for plants and animals inferred from morphology.
    You´ll see the difference – one kind of trees is significantly hierarchical (the ones for biological entities), while the other is not (the trees for virtually all designed entities).

    Linneaus, a Creationist, made his nested hierarchy based on a common design.

    True, as I said, common design is trivially compatible with a strict nested hierarchy, but it would also be trivially compatible with an anti-hierarchical distribution of features and anything in between. Since “Design” has no constraints whatsoever (can you explain precisely what the “Designers” could NOT do ?), “Design” is trivially compatible with any observation, but also refuted by none and supported by none. Common descent on the other hand makes specific predictions and thus can lead to hypotheses that refute or support the claim (three of which are mentioned above).

    And I will put up $10,000 US to prove that I understand nested hierarchies better than you.

    CHALLENGE ACCEPTED.
    Now let me prove that up until at least two months ago, you did not have the foggiest clue about what a nested hierarchy is. You (commenting as user “frisbee_kid” (do you deny that this was you ?)), posted the following comment:

    As for nested hierarchies- LoL!. The fact that the theory of evolution posits a gradual change, which means there would be many, many transitional forms, it is clar that the theory does not expect a nested hierarchy based on traits. Transitional forms by definition means there would be organisms with a ixture of defining traits, which would ruin a nested hierarchy based on traits.Link
    => Ergo, you were completely and utterly clueless about what nested hierarchies are just two months ago, and anything you might know about it has been learned within this timeframe. I on the other hand studied Molecular Biology and Bioinformatics and study phylogenetic trees (which requires an understanding of nested hierarchies) regularly at work since roughly five years (if I count the time since I started working mostly independently) and my work has been published in peer-reviewed journals.
    Evidence for those claims can of course be provided and I´ll happily provide you with copies of my academic certificates and publications (and my bank account of course).
    Now I hope you honor your commitment and thanks a lot for ten thousand bucks! :-)

    And I have taken basic biology courses. I ghave taken advanced courses too. So have the thousands of biologists who say that unguided evolution is bogus and untestable.

    Riiiiight. Thousands of Biologists! And here I am working as a Biologist and have never met a single one of those alleged “thousands of Biologists”, not at work, not at a conference and even if you count my online activities I have encountered just ONE Biologist (who studied Biology but does not work as a Biologist) who happens to doubt Evolution (which is by definition unguided).
    Hell, not even for that ridiculous “Dissent from Darwin list”, which includes quite a lot of engineers but VERY few Biologists, could you find those “thousands of Biologists”, which leads me to believe that you simply made this shit up.
    Btw, I don´t know many Biologists who would NOT agree with this statement:
    “We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged.”
    => Because few Biologists are so ignorant about evolution as to reduce it to “random mutation and natural selection” (which wouldn´t explain the Peacock´s tail or Stickleback armor or Intronization events – to mention just three examples out of thousands of possibilities).

    Positive evidence for entities has been presented.

    Your “positive evidence” amounts to “I don´t understand it, which means no one else understands it, which means it cannot be understood in principle, which means it must be magic.”
    Hint: an argument from ignorance is actually the precise opposite of “positive evidence”.

    OTOH you don’t have any evidence for unguided evolution. All you have are bald declarations.Now you are just lying, you can´t be that stupid. I´ve walked you through three specific examples in a way that even a complete idiot should be able to understand. And your replies so far amount to hilarious misunderstandings of Lenski´s work and nested hierarchies and to this lie right here.

    And IDists understand ID better than SETI researchers.What is there to understand ? To be a Cdesign Proponentsist, you could simply take a creationist “textbook” and replace all instances of “God” by “Designer” and “Creationists” by “Design proponents” (or Cdesign proponentsists if you are too stupid for the job). Alternatively, you simply make up new shit as you go along – take CSI for example, it´s simply hilarious to watch you guys come up with countless totally different (but all equally useless and inconsistent) definitions. How about we compare CSI sensu Dembski (all different versions of course), sensu VJ Torley, sensu KairosFocus and sensu seven other randomly selected Cdesign proponentsists, that should be fun, shouldn´t it ? ;-).

    If you ask ten different Evolutionary Biologists about the mean and variance of fixation times for neutral mutations in an asexual population of a given size (for example), they will all give you the exact same answer (and could even provide you with a mathematical proof and experimental evidence). And that is the difference between scientists and Cdesign proponentsists.

    So there it is. A challenge that he, JoeG, a kind of biological nobody, knows more than a molecular evolutionary biologist about nested hierarchies. This, after a previous conversation in which JoeG had shown merely two months before that he didn’t have a clue what they were!

    But JoeG seems unfazed by his own utter arrogance and continues:

    No, Andy- it all depends on what criteria is used- just ask the nested hierarchy experts- I have.

    And I am correct- transitional forms, by their very nature, contain a MIX of defining characteristics. THAT violates a nested hierarchy. Obvioulsy you don’t know anything about nested hierarchies and you think that your ignorance refutes me.

    If you have a mix of traits then a nested hierarchy is violated. period. End of story.

    For example if your sets require that ten characteristics be present and you have a transitional that only has 5, where do you put it? You have to redefine your parameters. IOW if all of the alleged transitionals were still alive we wouldn’t see a strict, objective nested hierarchy.

    Design is NOT compatible with any observation. You are just ignorant.
    Then there is the FACT that prokaryotes do NOT fit into a strict nested hierarchy.
    Geez Dr Denton went over that in “Evolution: A Theory in Crisis”.

    And please demonstrate that evolution prevents traits from being mixed and matched. What is the law that prevents such a thing.

    Ya see evolutionism is OK with any pattern- that is obvious by the total lack of nested hierarchy wrt prokaryotes.

    And you didn’t walk anyone through anything wrt unguided evolution.

    Oh and no evo can demonstrate the fixation of any allele.

    What’s interesting here is that this Denton chap wrote this book in 1985. Not a recent blockbuster. The book could not pass peer review because it was so erroneous and Denton has since changed his views on evolution! Wow. Good use of resources there! Philip Spieth, Professor of Genetics at University of California, Berkeley, reviewed the book saying “evolutionary theory is misrepresented and distorted; spurious arguments are advanced as disproof of topics to which the arguments are, at best, tangentially relevant; evolutionary biologists are quoted out of context; large portions of relevant scientific literature are ignored; dubious or inaccurate statements appear as bald assertations accompanied, more often than not, with scorn.” Denton did not even understand criticisms about his use of his idea of molecular equidistance!

    Anywho, there you go. Andy continued:

    Btw, maybe you didn´t get it, but I accepted your challenge.

    We could also have this settled by judges if you prefer. And, since I´m absolutely confident that I am right and you are as wrong as you could possibly be (since your hilarious misconceptions about nested hierarchies are so ridiculous that they would demonstrate that nested hierarchies are a logical impossibility if they were accurate), I let you choose the judges. Hell, they could even be Cdesign proponentsists for all I care.

    All that matters to me is that they can speak with authority about the matter – professional Mathematicians (or Computer Scientists) working on classification / clustering problems, Mathematicians working on Markovian processes, Biomathematicians, Bioinformaticians working on phylogeny inference and / or Markov models, Taxonomists etc. – and that they are willing to go on the record with their name and professional affiliation (and thus risking their reputation should they lie about the subject).

    You owe me ten thousand bucks Dude.

    and:

    No, Andy- it all depends on what criteria is used- just ask the nested hierarchy experts- I have.

    There is only one criterion – does the data show significant hierarchical structure or not. Which means you need a measurement for “hierarchical” and an associated test statistic. Established measures would be the consistency index for example (key publication here). Now, my claim is, that biological entities can be objectively assigned to nested hierarchies (i.e. associated with statistically highly significant measures of hierarchical structure), while most designed objects (watches, cell phones, computers etc.) can not. This has been established for decades in the scientific literature (see publication above + more recent papers that cite it or any textbook on phylogeny inference and references therein (and many of the college level textbooks on Evolutionary Biology)).
    You referring to an anonymous alleged expert on nested hierarchies who contradicts all published literature on the subject is not exactly convincing.

    And I am correct- transitional forms, by their very nature, contain a MIX of defining characteristics. THAT violates a nested hierarchy.

    :-D. Dude, this is about the single dumbest thing that you could have said about this subject, seriously – I really could not imagine a more outrageously stupid comment about nested hierarchies. Let me walk you through that reeeaaal slow. You seem to think that mixing features violates a nested hierarchy. If this would be true (hint: it isn´t), then the very existence of nested hierarchies would be a logical impossibility, because the only collections of entities where there is ZERO mixing of features, are collections where all entities are either exactly identical or completely different.

    But you are not interested in relationships between entities that are identical (it wouldn´t even make sense – imagine a “hierarchy” of 1000 instances of the number 1), you are interested in hierarchies of distinct entities! But since you just ruled out ANY mixing of attributes – you can only classify entities that have NOTHING in common and that all have the SAME distance / similarity to each other (which is INFINITY (or the maximum possible distance otherwise) and ZERO respectively). And a nested hierarchy for entities that have all the EXACT SAME similarity / distance to each other is a logical impossibility. Congratulations! You have just proven, using IDiot logic, that nested hierarchies cannot possibly exist.

    Using actual logic, it looks slightly different, here, entities in a hierarchy can (and always do) mix attributes. And the criterion for a significant hierarchical structure is that the entities do not mix attributes ARBITRARILY, but rather in a hierarchical way (who would have guessed ?!). Which means that the distribution of features in the leaves should be explained as much as possible by their relationship to their parent nodes (if the relation to parent nodes explains 100% of the variation in features at the leaves and all features emerge just once, the consistency index would be 1). What reduces the degree of hierarchical structure is the independent (i.e. not explainable by relation to parent node) emergence of features.

    Will you honor your commitment now and hand over the 10000 bucks or do you chicken out ?

    Obvioulsy you don’t know anything about nested hierarchies and you think that your ignorance refutes me.

    Yes, we´ve seen above how much we both now respectively about nested hierarchies…
    Hint: a big mouth is dangerous when you don´t have the foggiest idea what you are talking about ;-).

    If you have a mix of traits then a nested hierarchy is violated. period. End of story.

    No, as I demonstrated above, using your “understanding” of nested hierarchies, the very existence of nested hierarchies is a logical impossibility.
    Boy do you look like a fool now…

    Then there is the FACT that prokaryotes do NOT fit into a strict nested hierarchy. 

    Geez Dr Denton went over that in “Evolution: A Theory in Crisis”.

    Actually, they do. LGT notwithstanding (although LGT obviously does reduce the level of hierarchical structure). But I´d prefer to enter this discussion once you´ve demonstrated that you finally begin to understand what a nested hierarchy even is (another hint: it´s not a binary attribute).

    Design is NOT compatible with any observation. You are just ignorant.

    Oh really, yet neither you, nor any other IDiot, can explain what the alleged “Designers” could NOT do and which constraints are thus put on possible observations if the “Design hypothesis” is true, no matter how often you are asked (as I did above). Which means you are either lying, or stupid. Which one is it ?

    And please demonstrate that evolution prevents traits from being mixed and matched. What is the law that prevents such a thing.

    Actually traits are being mixed, your idiotic misconceptions that ANY mixing of characters violates a nested hierarchy has been addressed above.

    As to your question why evolution from a common ancestor predicts a nested hierarchy of features, I guess we have to start at the very basics (Dude, it get´s less and less believable that you had any Biology classes or any form of higher education for that matter…).
    You might have noticed that children tend to be different from their parents, but still much more similar to them than to randomly chosen other people (and MUCH more similar to them than to a randomly chosen non-human animal). That is because genetic material is actually inherited from your parents (were you homeschooled ?). And, believe it or not, this form of vertical transfer of genetic material is actually by far the most common form of transfer and for many species even the only one. What this means is that the offspring produced in any species will, statistically, always be more similar to their parents than to other individuals individuals that are not their parents and much more similar to their parents than to members of other species. If you extrapolate this process into the future and combine it with the variation (this is caused by so called “Mutation”, but we´ll get to that another time), you get a nested hierarchy of similarities between organisms. Since vertical transmission is dominant over lateral transmission of genetic material, and sometimes even the only mode of transmission, descent with modification from a common ancestor necessarily produces nested hierarchies of similarities (for a mathematical treatment, see Harris, T. E. (1989) The Theory of Branching Processes. New York: Dover.).
    Caveat: the distribution of very fast evolving characters between distantly related taxa will be indistinguishable from random noise (that´s why fast evolving characters are preferred for studying very closely related species while slow evolving ones are preferred for distantly related ones).

    Ya see evolutionism is OK with any pattern

    Ok, you don´t seem to be lying, you seem to be a genuine idiot.

    that is obvious by the total lack of nested hierarchy wrt prokaryotes.

    Actually, prokaryotes show (unsurprisingly since vertical transmission is more frequent than lateral) a highly significant degree of hierarchical structure, which is (again unsurprisingly) lower than the degree of hierarchical structure for species where LGT virtually never happens.

    And you didn’t walk anyone through anything wrt unguided evolution.

    Don´t blame me for your mental deficiency.

    Oh and no evo can demonstrate the fixation of any allele.

    Complete and utter moron, or troll, or both…. After reading this, I´d say it could be any of the three.

    And so it continues. Some could say that this is an evolutionary smackdown. Yes, Andy is being harsh on JoeG verbally, but if you have seen the history of Joe’s comments, this is totally understandable. The guy came here months ago and arrogantly started demanding, accusing, shouting and certainly not being dialectically discursive!

    What do we do? Does Andy send a bill to Joe? Is Joe now indebted to Andy? How do we sort this wrangle? Do we call the lawyers?

    [UPDATE: http://intelligentreasoning.blogspot.co.uk/ – this is JoeG’s website. This is his tagline:

    “Promoting, advancing and defending Intelligent Design via data, logic and Intelligent Reasoning and exposing the theory of evolution as the nonsense it is. I also educate evotards about ID and the theory of evolution one tard at a time and sometimes in groups”

    Which is a flat contradiction. It is a tirade of invective. The only comments on his posts appear to come from himself. Hey-ho, judge for yourself. As I have said, I welcome his voice here, as long as it is reasonable and genuinely open.]

    Category: CreationismEvolutionScience and religion

    Tags:

    Article by: Jonathan MS Pearce

    • SmilodonsRetreat

      He’s been doing the exact same thing for years….

    • pboyfloyd

      Hah, Andy is never seeing that money, it doesn’t exist!

      • Yeah, joey ‘the welcher’ gallien won’t come across with ten cents, let alone ten grand.

    • I’m going to be frank and say this whole debacle is fucking genius!

    • “Regular IDist commenter, JoeG, is a major proponent of pseudoscientific unguided evolution.”

      Hi Jonathan, shouldn’t “unguided” be ‘guided’?

    • Daydreamer1

      I wonder if it is helpful to present the view of a geologist here.

      Throughout my degree we studied paleontology, which obviously means studying fossils, but in the wider context of a geological degree means looking at how Earth history has shaped the fossil record.

      Much of this obviously relates to extinctions, but evolutionary adaptation is a story of how life has adapted to the changing Earth.

      The ID proponents seem to have geared themselves towards to biology, which is fine, but so far have I have not really seen them tackle the relationship between Earth history and evolution in their notion of ‘design’.

      If anything has been designing genetics – been plotting its course – then it has ultimately done it by shaping Earth history. Much of this would mean controlling plate tectonics to divide and incorporate gene pools with the correct geological timing, as well as controlling ice ages, desertification, mass extinctions due to volcanism, oceanic chemistry changes, asteroid impacts etc The list would go on and no doubt feature such things as mountain building to separate gene pools…

      Focusing just on how evolution works misses the bigger ID claim – that Earth history has been very finely controlled to create this outcome.

      So, does geology indicate that it has? This is a testable hypothesis after all. Nature, by definition, is events following laws, whereas design would be shown by geological history surprisingly deviating from them. And the answer as best as I know it is no, Earth history is explainable by abiding by the laws of nature. I.e. when we study rock formations and plot such things as stress and strain, folding, fold hinge directions and dynamics to study plate tectonics (to study structural geology) over mountain belts, or subduction zones, or spreading ridges, or hot spots, or fault zones, in rocks of widely varying ages, we find that they plot exactly as the maths says they should (completely solid evidence against a global flood as well, by the way).

      This can be repeated across all the forms of evidence through structural geology, geochemistry, geophysics. When we put it all together to produce those nice movies you can download of the web showing plate tectonic drift, mountain building, subduction etc etc (the Earths cummulative physical history) we don’t see any divine hand pushing continents around in a way that does not obey natural laws. Furthermore we cannot look at the geological record and compare it to key points in evolutionary history and find anything bizarre happening.

      Earth history is entirely natural – as proven by the vast numbers of evidenced that all interlock and show the same thing the world over.

      So where is the designer?

      It just seems to me that ID proponents like to delve into the genetics and microbiology to create ‘might have’ arguments without every realizing that their idea is utterly disproven by sciences beyond the biological. And perhaps biologists are missing this too…

      • D

        That’s a great post. I might even make it a quote of the day post!

        Thanks so much!

        • Daydreamer1

          Hi Jonathan,
          I didn’t know you had a ‘quote of the day’. It sounds like the sort of thing I should be reading anyway!

          Cheers.

      • Andy_Schueler

        Great post!

        The ID proponents seem to have geared themselves towards the biology, which is fine-ish, but so far have I have not really seen them tackle the relationship between Earth history and evolution from their ‘design’ perspective.

        I think the Cdesign proponentsists would have a very hard time making any statements about Earth history from a “design perspective” because they intentionally say nothing about which “Designers” did what exactly at which points in time by which means. And they can´t really change that without defeating one of the main purposes of ID (providing a big tent under which creationists of all kinds can rally) – as soon as they try to make any statements about earth history, they have to align themselves with either the young-earth or old-earth creationist faction and loose the support of the one they didn´t align with.

        • Daydreamer1

          Cheers!

          Yes, I can see the logic in that. There is a very concerted effort to not label the designer. Still, the attempt to claim that evolution cannot achieve what it has without a designer integrated into Earth history makes for a very strange conclusion. The designer has been present designing away, but only going along with the flow of a natural Earth history. A designer that has little interest in goals over a period of 3.5 billion years?

          Either way, the realisation should be more widespread since it is a knockdown blow to theistic evolution.

      • frisbee_kid

        I take it that you have never read “The Privileged Planet”. ID arguments do extend beyond biology.

        • Are you trying to have a game of “You haven’t read this, and I have?”

          Not only is that immature, but it is not the right way to go about being civil. We can all play that game.

          Perhaps, “You might want to read X as it has some valuable info on topic Y” woudl have been a nicer way to say it.

          Are we going to have to school you on civility?

          Here is a quote from a commenter on your blog:

          “LOL!
          You’re hilarious Chubs! The way you went back and modified an old web page then claimed it was the original was an act of fat liar genius!

          I bet you won’t live this latest debacle down for a while.”

          Here is your retort:

          “LoL!
          Ignorant faggot liar thorTARD spews shit from its ass into its own mouth!

          I bet he loves the taste….”

          Whatever God you believe in sure must be proud of your civility!

          Wow. Perhaps we can help you here to converse like an adult.

          • frisbee_kid

            No Jonathan, I am simply refuting what daydreamer said. I understand that you are proud of your ID ignorance. And I am sure that you think your ignorance is some sort of refutation.

            • Let me remind you of JoeG:

              “Only a coward attacks the person and not the evidence.”

              And again:

              “I understand that you are proud of your ID ignorance. And I am sure that you think your ignorance is some sort of refutation.”

              Coward.

            • Daydreamer1

              Sorry frisbee_kid.

              There isn’t much to refute if you’re just refuting me and not my point.

              The ID proponents seem to have geared themselves towards the biology, which is fine-ish, but so far I have not really seen them tackle the relationship between Earth history and evolution from their ‘design’ perspective.

              Notice that I specifically said ‘seem to have geared’ and ‘so far I have not’. This was not by accident.

              Is ‘geared to’ too assertive a statement here? Lets investigate.

              If I type in ‘intelligent design’ into the net I get multiple websites. Just looking at the first 10 my statement ‘geared towards biology’ seems entirely reasonably. On the front page of each we see pictures of Darwin, quotes about Richard Dawkins, statements of evolution, evolution evolution, stuff about the Dover trial… There is a little on philosophy, but other than that it is almost 99% biology.

              To be fair though lets look at the published literature. The site (http://sententias.org/2012/02/15/id-papers/) contains a list of published papers on ID.

              Starting with the first 65 we find:

              Biology: 78%
              Maths and physics: 20%
              Other: 3%

              One paper was about the Cambrian explosion, but about information increase. Even if we say this one addressed the geology it is only 1 paper from 65.

              I feel safe enougn saying ID is geared towards biology. Obviously I am perfectly safe saying that ‘it seems to me’ since thats just me.

              Your right to point out ID’s attempts to hypothesis about universal probabilities and that is fine. I have come across them, though I would expect you to admit that they are speculative and more philosophical in nature than scientific. After all, where is the science in pointing out that something is improbable once you have calculated the odds? I am extremely improbable, but it does not mean that my parents had no choice in who, where and when they slept together – especially looking at the situation from 3.5 billion years ago.

              But after all that none of it addresses the geology. What is the point of saying that probability is very low, which might imply a designer, if the mechanisms through which the design must have taken place can be shown to be natural?

              Yep, we are extremely unlikely. Extremely beyond imagination. But the geological evidence shows that the events that affected evolution on this planet over the course of the last few billion years – the events that led to the dinosaurs, and led to the mammals, and shaped the mammal tree, happened naturally.

              Perhaps you haven’t fully considered the affects of Earth history on evolution.

            • frisbee_kid

              Well if sheer dumb luck is all that you really have, then you don’t have any science.

            • Daydreamer1

              My point exactly. I can understand ID’s fascination with genetics and evolution, but speculation about habitable zones, Jupiter type planets, etc etc – all the ‘its just really improbable’ type arguments leave ID as just that – speculation. I agree with you entirely; on that it is not science.

              As for ID’s evolutionary arguments what do you think the evidence for the fullness of the geological sciences means for the notion of the designer? What does it mean if the designer has only been adding information relevant to geological changes and has not been designing with any goal in mind?

            • frisbee_kid

              Your point is that your position isn’t scientific? On that we agree.
              Oh and it isn’t about improbabilities. It is that absent design all you have is sheer dumb luck.

            • Daydreamer1

              Err, nope. I think you have massively misunderstood. My point was that arguments such as the improbability of us are unscientific. You seemed to say as much as I agreed with you.

              My argument is that Earth history’s affect on evolution (Earth History is a module within the geology degree – I don’t mean it necessarily in the public sense, but the academic study of the history of the Earth within the context of geology) is primary and has very much functioned in the role of the designer. DNA must obviously be capable of doing everything biologists say it needs to, so ID-ists focus on it is still necessary. But even if ID-ists had a good argument about the biology (I accept that biologists almost universally say they do not), Earth History reveals a very funny designer.

              Perhaps this is difficult to understand. After all you’re only going to ‘get’ what understanding you have access to and there isn’t much on the internet. So I don’t think its a criticism against you; more work needs to be done on public access to science.

            • frisbee_kid

              Dude,
              Your position doesn’t deserve to be included in any probability arguument. That is because you can’t even demonstrate a feasibility.
              DNA has not been demonstrated to do what biologists say it needs to. You lose.
              And no, earth’s history does not reveal a funny designer. It has revealed ignorant anti-IDists.

            • Daydreamer1

              Hi frisbee_kid,

              I really don’t think you’re understanding this. I’m not talking about probability with any reference to myself. I’m talking about it with regard to the ID arguments I have read outside of biology; like the ones that state that the fortuitousness of Earths location is evidence of a designer. I agree entirely with you that probability is a poor argument, which is exactly what I am saying. You seem to be arguing that I am saying the opposite of what I am saying, which is weird. I agree with you for crying out loud!

              As for the biology arguments they do not concern me here, I am not talking about them – my points were about the geology. Geology is a different subject to biology. The only sense in which I have lost when you are talking about a different subject than my point is that I could have spent my time drinking beer.

        • Daydreamer1

          I haven’t :)

          Reading what I can on the net though it looks very much alongside the style of design arguments presented against evolution. Admittedly I only have users comments to go on, but I have constrained myself to the 5 Star ones so as to argue against the Ironman, and not the Strawman.

          They seem to indicate that much of the text is based around the improbability of us. This argument is well dealt with elsewhere. It also has nothing to do with my point.

          If you argue a designer then you have to look at its tools and the tools of the designer to affect evolution are the same as those factors that have affected evolution. An assessment of those tools reveals the nature of the designer – and even if there is one. Do you disagree?

    • Joe G

      Nice bullshit post- where do you place all the alleged transitional forms that must have existed? You canbnot place them in the existing sets because they do not fit the sets’ definitions.

      Sp please link to a valid definition of nested hiearchies- I have and then show us how to constryct one.

      BTW Jon, Denton didn’t use molecules for the nested hierarchy- neither did Linne and neither does taxonomy.

      And nested hierarchies are a MATHEMATICAL concept, not biological. So Andy doesn’t have any expertise over me there.

      And

      “Darwin described how common descent could provide a logical basis for classification”

      It can explain it. It does NOT predict it.
      Ya see with evolution traits can be lost if that is what survives. Or traits can stay the same, meaning you will only have one set.
      So evolutionism can live with a nested hierarchy and it can definitely live without one. But then again, just about anything can be placed into a nested hierarchy- it all depoends on the criteria used- ask the experts, I have.

      • And how does guided evolution necessitate such notions you refer to in a way that unguided can’t?

        • frisbee_kid

          Is that your “retort”? Wow, I don’t know if I can live through such a devastating refutation…

          • Eh? This is the dialectical process. You might want to read this: http://skepticink.com/tippling/2013/02/20/philosophy-101-socrates-factfile/

            This is half your problem – you have NO IDEA how to discuss things. Everything, every comment, is a battle for you. Offense and offensive. If you understood your failings here, you would have more friends and could influence more people.

            Oh, and you didn’t answer the question. Which is actually entirely the point.

            You see, every criticism you have of evolution is a criticism of your own position unless you can show that guided evolution necessitates such an issue, where unguided doesn’t.

            So, answer the question. Don;t run away like you often do.

            • frisbee_kid

              Unguided evolution doesn’t explain anything. It has no use.

            • Andy_Schueler

              Actually it does. But you are demonstrably way too stupid to even begin to understand why and how.

            • frisbee_kid

              Actually you are full of shit. All you can do is baldly declare evolution is unguided.

            • Andy_Schueler

              BOLDY. Moron.

      • Andy_Schueler

        Yet another spectacularly idiotic misconception of yours that has already been answered in the previous thread!
        This is now the third time you fucking idiot.

        Nice bullshit post- where do you place all the alleged transitional forms that must have existed? You canbnot place them in the existing sets because they do not fit the sets’ definitions.

        Here it is again:

        “*sigh*, is this really that difficult to understand ?

        Alright, let´s try it with a little visual aid, a small subset of the mammalian phylogeny:

        ………..——-Human
        ………..|
        …….—|A
        …….|…|
        …….|…——-Chimp
        ——|.C
        …….|…——-Mouse
        …….|…|
        …….|–|B
        ……….|
        ……….——–Rat

        => The common ancestor of Humans and Chimps is actually similar to Humans AND Chimps. And the common ancestor of Primates and Rodents is similar to Primates AND Rodents. Oh Noes! It can´t be a nested hierarchy! The common ancestor of mammals belongs to two different groups and there must be no overlap!!
        Well, actually, it doesn´t belong to different groups, because at the highest level of classification, there is only ONE group in this phylogeny – if you go down one level, you would have TWO groupings (A and B) in this phylogeny which are nestedwithin the more inclusive group C (hint: guess why it is called a NESTED hierarchy…). C has a higher taxonomic rank than A and B, and A and B have a higher taxonomic rank than the four leaves. Hint: “taxonomic ranks” are things like “Species”, “Genus”, “Family”, “Order”, “Class” etc.

        Did you honestly believe that ancestors must be similar to one of the descending lineages but COMPLETELY different (not even sharing a single character!) from the other one ? And they wonder why we call them IDiots…”

        Sp please link to a valid definition of nested hiearchies- I have and then show us how to constryct one.

        READ THE COMMENTS ADDRESSED TO YOU FOR FUCKS SAKE.

        BTW Jon, Denton didn’t use molecules for the nested hierarchy- neither did Linne and neither does taxonomy.

        I don´t give a fuck about what Denton did or didn´t do. And taxonomists use molecular data.

        And nested hierarchies are a MATHEMATICAL concept, not biological. So Andy doesn’t have any expertise over me there.

        Hint: mathematics is sometimes used in the sciences, and nested hierarchies are one of the most important concepts there is in evolutionary biology.

        It can explain it. It does NOT predict it. Ya see with evolution traits can be lost if that is what survives. Or traits can stay the same, meaning you will only have one set.
        So evolutionism can live with a nested hierarchy and it can definitely live without one.

        READ THE COMMENTS ADDRESSED TO YOU FOR FUCKS SAKE.

        But then again, just about anything can be placed into a nested hierarchy- it all depoends on the criteria used- ask the experts, I have.

        READ THE COMMENTS ADDRESSED TO YOU FOR FUCKS SAKE.
        I explained this to you in my very first comment in the previous thread – you just cannot be that stupid…

        • frisbee_kid

          How is that a nested hierarchy Andy? What are the transitional forms?

          Why transitional forms ruin an objective and orderly nested
          hierarchy.

          Nested hierarchies are constructed by making sets. Those are
          specified, well-defined sets in a specified well-defined order. The more
          characters you can use to define your sets, the better for your nested
          hierarchy. Each set on one level has to be distinct from the others on that
          level. For example all the similarities each species may have with another are
          taken care of on higher levels, such as Genera, Family, on up to the top.

          First things first- Linnean taxonomy, ie the observed nested
          hierarchy with animals, has nothing to do with evolution, guided or unguided.
          It was created to exemplify a common design. Evolutionists stole it, changed
          the headings and said theirs can also explain it. Note- NOT predict it, explain
          it. If anything nested hierarchies are evidence for our cleverness, nothing
          more.

          That said each species belongs to a well defined set. That
          set, in turn, belongs to a larger set, Genera.
          Each Genera belongs to a Family (another set), which belongs to an Order
          (another set), which belongs to a Class (yup, another set), which belongs to a
          Phylum (another set), which belongs to a Kingdom, then we have a domain and
          finally “the” superset, all living organisms. I call it “the” superset because
          every subset has to have all of the attributes of that superset.

          Transitional forms are species too. They are defined as
          having a mix of defining characteristics from two other species. A mammal-like
          reptile doesn’t qualify as a mammal (not enough defining characteristics), nor
          does it qualify as a reptile (not enough defining characteristics). So you
          would either have to throw it out OR make more “branches” by redefining everything
          and using fewer and fewer defining characteristics for each set. You would have
          to do this for each alleged transitional form. And your scheme would become a
          mess very quickly. And its objectivity would diminish as more “branches” are
          added.

          • Andy_Schueler

            How is that a nested hierarchy Andy?

            You still think you don´t owe me ten thousand bucks although you still don´t even know what a nested hierarchy is ??
            Cute.
            Nested hierarchy:
            “The arrangement of entities in a hierarchical series of nested classes, in which similar or related classes at one hierarchical level are combined comprehensively into more inclusive classes at the next higher level.”

            What are the transitional forms?

            Hint: the lines in the tree indicate relation by descent.
            Hint2: since you still seem to be confused about what a transitional form is, a transitional form shows the intermediate states between an ancestral form and that of its descendants.

            First things first- Linnean taxonomy, ie the observed nestedhierarchy with animals, has nothing to do with evolution, guided or unguided.
            It was created to exemplify a common design.

            READ THE COMMENTS ADDRESSED TO YOU FOR FUCKS SAKE.
            This was explained to you in my second(!) comment in the previous thread.

            Evolutionists stole it, changed
            the headings and said theirs can also explain it. Note- NOT predict it,

            Wrong. Idiot.

            you would either have to throw it out OR make more “branches” by redefining everything and using fewer and fewer defining characteristics for each set.
            You would have to do this for each alleged transitional form.

            TRANSITIONAL FORMS CONNECTING EXTANT SPECIES TO THEIR ANCESTORS ARE DEAD AND CORRESPOND EITHER TO INTERNAL NODES IN A PHYLOGENY OR TO EXTINCT LINEAGES, NOT TO LEAVES!!
            This honestly cannot be that difficult.

            • frisbee_kid

              “The arrangement of entities in a hierarchical series of nested classes, in which similar or related classes at one hierarchical level are combined comprehensively into more inclusive classes at the next higher level.”

              Entities? Who wrote that? Sets, not entities.

              Evolutionists stole it, changed
              the headings and said theirs can also explain it. Note- NOT predict it,

              Wrong. Idiot.

              It is also worth repeating that nested hierarchy was FIRST used as evidence for a common design and all evos did when they took over was to replace archetype with common ancestor:

              One would expect a priori that such a complete change of the philosophical bias of classification would result in a radical change of classification, but this was by no means the case. There was hardly and change in method before and after Darwin, except that “archetype” was replaced by the common ancestor.– Ernst Mayr

              Simpson echoed those comments.

              TRANSITIONAL FORMS CONNECTING EXTANT SPECIES TO THEIR ANCESTORS ARE DEAD AND CORRESPOND EITHER TO INTERNAL NODES OR TO EXTINCT LINEAGES, NOT TO LEAVES!!

              That is an ancestor-descendent relationship format. That means it is a non-nested hierarchy. You owe me $10,000

            • frisbee_kid

              Summativity- your diagram lacks summativity- see page 10 of Eric B Knox, “The use of hierarchies as organizational models in systematics”, Biological Journal of the Linnean Society (1998), 63: 1–49

            • Andy_Schueler

              No, it doesn´t. Continue your frantic googling young padawan, much too learn you have.

            • frisbee_kid

              See The use of hierarchies as organizational models:

              The fact that speciation ends with two species, not two halves of a species, is an indication that this hierarchy lacks summativity, and therefore, is non-nested. pg 13
               

              So Andy posted a diagram of a non-nested hierarchy and tried to pass it off as a nested hierarchy. He even tried to berate me for not understanding it. I just didn’t understand why someone who claims to understand nested hierarchies would try to get away with such a thing.
              You lose. Pay up

            • Andy_Schueler

              IDiot.

              So Andy posted a diagram of a non-nested hierarchy and tried to pass it off as a nested hierarchy.

              And it IS a nested hierarchy. You are referring to a highly specialized article which you don´t even begin to understand and which distinguishes between nested, semi-nested and fully-nested hierarchies.
              According to his distinction (which is in practice virtually never used – see ANY textbook on Cladistics / Taxonomy – because there are only a handful of conceivable cases were these distinctions make any difference whatsoever and because there is an almost obscene degree of philosophical nitpicking in this distinction), my example would be “non-nested” if read as a phylogeny, “semi-nested” if read as a cladogram (hint: it looks exactly the same as cladogram or phylogeny, but internal nodes have different meanings) and “fully nested” if I transform it as he did in figure 5. Measuring the degree of hierarchical structure would yield the exact same result for any of these representations.
              It IS a nested hierarchy.

              He even tried to berate me for not understanding it.

              And rightfully so, because you posted some of the most ridiculously idiotic comments about nested hierarchies I´ve ever seen. See the OP and your comments on this thread.

              You lose. Pay up

              How many times do I have to say it ? I´m fine with YOU choosing the judges to settle this matter – I´m fine with you choosing Cdesign proponentsist judges to settle this matter. All I care about is that they are qualified (see previous posts) and willing to go on the record with name + professional affilition. And if you are too lazy, I´ll select the judges.
              What more do you want and why do you chicken out ??
              You are confident that you are right, then put your money where your big fat mouth is coward!

            • BOOM!

            • Andy_Schueler

              Omfg, have you seen his blogpost ? The guy STILL doesn´t understand what transitional forms are…

            • frisbee_kid

              Both Darwin and Denton agree wih me, asshole.

            • Andy_Schueler

              You could not possibly know that because you are too stupid to understand their writings. Moron.

            • frisbee_kid

              Andy owes me $10,000

            • Andy_Schueler

              IDiot coward Joe G. is a fucktard and chickens out of his bet – big surprise.

            • Andy_Schueler

              And it case you don´t know how to find putative judges, take a look at scientific journals relevant to the subject, for example.:
              http://sysbio.oxfordjournals.org/
              or:
              http://www.springer.com/statistics/statistical+theory+and+methods/journal/357
              if you prefer a computer scientist / mathematician.
              Look at the abstracts and drop the corresponding author a short and polite mail to inquire if (s)he would be willing to invest a few minutes to help settle a bet (try to find Brits, afaict – they love bets).

              And my offer stands, I´ll select judges for you if you are unable to do so (and I don´t care if you prefer Biologists or Mathematicians / Computer Scientists qualified to speak with authority on this issue).

              I made this as easy for you as possible – what more could you possibly ask for ? Now, let´s see how confident you are (and if you actually have $10,000…)

            • frisbee_kid

              Liar- the article refutes you. And you did NOT transform it into figure 5. You posted a non-nested hierarchy and tried to pass it off as nested.

              As for judges- well one would be Denton:

              There is another stringent condition which must be satisfied if a hierarchic pattern is to result as the end product of an evolutionary process: no
              ancestral forms can be permitted to survive
              . This can be seen by examining the tree diagram on page 135. If any of the ancestors X, Y, or Z, or if any of the hypothetical transitional connecting species stationed on the main branches of the tree, had survived and had therefore to be included in the classification scheme, the distinctness of the divisions would be blurred by intermediate or partially inclusive classes and what remained of the hierarchic pattern would be highly disordered.- Denton, “Evolution: A Theory in Crisis”
              page 136 (X, Y and Z are hypothetical node populations)

              You LOSE

            • Andy_Schueler

              the article refutes you

              No, it doesn´t.

              And you did NOT transform it into figure 5

              Which is completely irrelevant you IDIOT. Read the fucking comment you reply to.

              You LOSE

              You are STILL writing bullshit like:
              “The point is that I had claimed that transitional forms, by their very definition, would violate a nested hierarchy scheme. Ya see they have a mix of characteristics of two or more other species, and that means you would have to create a new set, which means redefining all the old sets.”
              => you demonstrably don´t even begin to understand the subject you try to talk about.

              It´s very easy, choose qualified judges (see previous posts), and put your fucking money where your mouth is, COWARD.

            • Andy_Schueler

              the article refutes you.

              READ THE FUCKING COMMENT.

              And you did NOT transform it into figure 5

              Which is completely irrelevant you moron – READ THE COMMENT YOU REPLY TO.

              …if any of the hypothetical transitional connecting species stationed on the main branches of the tree, had survived….

              THEY DIDN´T SURVIVE YOU FUCKING MORON. I´ve already told you at least three times that transitional forms that link extant species to their ancestors are DEAD and either correspond to INTERNAL NODES in a phylogenetic tree or to an EXTINCT lineage. Are you retarded ?

            • frisbee_kid

              Nope, ypu posted a non-nested hierarchy- you did NOT transform it. You are a moron

            • Andy_Schueler

              I would say read the fucking comment you reply to, but based on experience, I can say that you are not going to do it anyway or are to stupid to understand it.

            • Andy_Schueler

              Entities? Who wrote that? Sets, not entities.

              Look up the word “entity” , idiot.

              Evolutionists stole it, changed
              the headings and said theirs can also explain it. Note- NOT predict it,

              READ THE FUCKING COMMENTS ADDRESSED TO YOU. MORON

              It is also worth repeating that nested hierarchy was FIRST used as evidence for a common design and all evos did when they took over was to replace archetype with common ancestor:

              One would expect a priori that such a complete change of the philosophical bias of classification would result in a radical change of classification, but this was by no means the case. There was hardly and change in method before and after Darwin, except that “archetype” was replaced by the common ancestor.– Ernst Mayr

              Simpson echoed those comments.

              Linnaeus did not try to argue for creationism with his classification he tried to understand the order in creation with his classification – creationism was assumed to be self-evidently true anyways at this time.

              That is an ancestor-descendent relationship format. That means it is a non-nested hierarchy. You owe me $10,000

              IDIOT. You can always convert a phylogeny to a cladogram, the topology of the tree is IDENTICAL in both cases. It is completely irrelevant whether you measure the degree of hierarchical structure for the phylogeny or the cladogram because the topology is IDENTICAL and the leaves are IDENTICAL. And obviously BOTH are nested hierarchies – they represent the SAME graph for fucks sake, only the meaning of the internal nodes changes.

              You owe me $10,000.

          • Philosophically speaking, there are no such things as species. The Problem of Species, the Sorites Paradox and nominalism spring to mind – http://www.skepticink.com/tippling/2013/03/31/original-sin-answering-thomas-l-mcdonald/.

            I think recognising that species don’t objectively exist is key to your incoherent claims. As soon as you realise that species are conceptual constructs with no objective reference points, you will start to understand evolution better.

            • Any comments on this, JoeG?

            • frisbee_kid

              Commenst on what? I am already commenting on your nested hierarchy and science ignorance

      • joey said:

        “… all the alleged transitional forms that must have existed…”

        Hey joey, thanks for finally admitting that transitional forms must have existed. Now don’t you think that you should go and tell your fellow IDiots who vehemently deny that any transitional forms ever existed that transitional forms must have existed?

        • frisbee_kid

          Umm according to EVOLUTIONISM- again I see that you are too dense to understand teh CONTEXT

          • I was hoping you’d say something like that, joey.

            First of all, what exactly is “EVOLUTIONISM”? I’ll assume, for now, that when you say “EVOLUTIONISM” you mean the scientific theory of evolution that doesn’t include your belief that all living things (and everything else) were/are designed, front-loaded, created, and guided by ‘the-supernatural-designer-creator-allah’.

            Let’s also keep one of your often repeated statements in mind: “ID is NOT anti-evolution.”

            So, going back to your statements: “… all the alleged transitional forms that must have existed…”, and: “Umm according to EVOLUTIONISM”, and: “ID is NOT anti-evolution.”, it’s obvious that you’re claiming that transitional forms must have existed according to the scientific theory of evolution but they must not have existed and do not exist according to your IDiotic version of evolution.

            Tell me joey, how can there be ‘evolution’ that was/is designed, front-loaded, created, and guided by ‘the-supernatural-designer-creator-allah’ if there were/are no such things as transitional forms? Please explain, in detail, how ‘evolution’ happens without transitional forms.

            • Fascinating point. Of course, Joe’s whole case is not or should not be picking hole in evolution per se, because every issue, such as transitional forms, must be inherently more inexplicable on guided evolution. But the problem is, guided evolution looks exactly like unguided. Any difference must be entirely BECAUSE of guidance. Thus any criticism is answerable by guidance. The supposed lack of transitional forms must be JUST BECAUSE there is guidance.

              Yet Joe fails to show this, so his whole thesis evaporates (not only because his criticisms hold no basis!).

            • Yeah, one the one hand joey and other IDiots constantly pick on many of the processes/events/results of evolution, including transitional forms, but on the other hand they claim that ID is NOT anti-evolution and that the processes/events/results of evolution (which includes transitional forms) are designed, front-loaded, and guided by ‘the designer’. I left out the word ‘created’ this time because the IDiots rarely say it, but it’s obvious that that is the word they’re thinking of.

              joey has belligerently argued that Tiktaalik is NOT a transitional form, and he and most (or all?) other IDiots have made it very clear that they do NOT accept ANY transitional forms. His (and their) version of evolution can basically be summed up like this:

              At some point or points in time, in a single generation, all of the offspring of an entire population of one or more living things were/are phenotypically different enough from their parents to be a new species, or a new genus, family, order, etc., due to the pre-set activation of ‘specified’ programming in their designed, front-loaded software, and that all of the parents went extinct at that point. In other words, there’s no such thing as transitional forms because each ‘form’ is a pre-programmed, specifically designed creation by “God” (in joey’s case that would be allah).

              ———————————————————————–

              That’s assuming, of course, that joey or any other IDiot accepts any type of evolution at all. I don’t believe that any of them actually do, no matter what they may say.

            • What a silly idea!

            • frisbee_kid

              Liar- I have never argued that Tiktaalik isn’t a transitional form- never
              And darwin was a Creationist.

            • joey, if you have never argued that Tiktaalik isn’t a transitional form, will you state here and now that you accept Tiktaalik as a transitional form that helps to demonstrate the transition from fish to tetrapods and the common ancestry of fish and tetrapods, including humans?

            • Joe G October 8, 2010 at 5:25 AM

              Zachriel:
              Tiktaalik exhibits intermediate characteristics between fish and tetrapods.

              (joey) Great now all you have to do is take fish embryos and mutate them and see if such a transitional form will arise.

              In the absence of such a test all you have is wishful thinking.

              From here:

              http://darwins-god.blogspot.com/2010/10/back-to-school-part-v.html?showComment=1286467945896#c8136616312634243508

              Read the whole thread for more of joey’s arguments against Tiktaalik being a transitional form, and some extra bonus tard.

              There’s also this:

              “Why would anyone predict that fish would leave the water other than a preconceived bias that the fish did leave the water? What would the first fish to do so eat?

              What- the first fish to climb out of water just happened to do so in “walking” distance of food? What the heck (on land) would satisfy Tiki’s hunger?”

              From here:

              http://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=17489641&postID=115789556626951761

              And there’s much more.

    • frisbee_kid

      Nested hierarchies have a direction-

      For example in the nested hierarchy of living organisms we have the animal kingdom.

      To be placed in the animal kingdom an organism must have all of the criteria of an animal.

      For example:

      All members of the Animalia are multicellular (eukaryotes), and all are heterotrophs (that is, they rely directly or indirectly on other organisms for their nourishment). Most ingest food and digest it in an internal cavity.

      Animal cells lack the rigid cell walls that characterize plant cells. The bodies of most animals (all except sponges) are made up of cells organized into tissues, each tissue specialized to some degree to perform specific functions.

      The next level (after kingdom) contain the phyla. Phyla have all the characteristics of the kingdom PLUS other criteria.

      For example one phylum under the Kingdom Animalia, is Chordata.

      Chordates have all the characteristics of the Kingdom PLUS the following:

      Chordates are defined as organisms that possess a structure called a notochord, at least during some part of their development. The notochord is a rod that extends most of the length of the body when it is fully developed. Lying dorsal to the gut but ventral to the central nervous system, it stiffens the body and acts as support during locomotion. Other characteristics shared by chordates include the following (from Hickman and Roberts, 1994):

      bilateral symmetry
      segmented body, including segmented muscles
      three germ layers and a well-developed coelom.
      single, dorsal, hollow nerve cord, usually with an enlarged anterior end (brain)
      tail projecting beyond (posterior to) the anus at some stage of development
      pharyngeal pouches present at some stage of development
      ventral heart, with dorsal and ventral blood vessels and a closed blood system
      complete digestive system
      bony or cartilaginous endoskeleton usually present.

      The next level is the class. All classes have the criteria of the kingdom, plus all the criteria of its phylum PLUS the criteria of its class.

      This is important because it shows there is a direction- one of additive characteristics.

      Yet evolution does NOT have a direction. Characteristics can be lost as well as gained. And characteristics can remain stable.

      All of that means we should not expect a nested hierarchy with descent with modification.

      • Andy_Schueler

        This is important because it shows there is a direction- one of additive characteristics.

        Yet evolution does NOT have a direction. Characteristics can be lost as well as gained. And characteristics can remain stable.

        All of that means we should not expect a nested hierarchy with descent with modification.

        Yet another spectacularly idiotic misconception of yours that has already been answered in the previous thread!

        So, here it is again:
        “As to your question why evolution from a common ancestor predicts a nested hierarchy of features, I guess we have to start at the very basics (Dude, it get´s less and less believable that you had any Biology classes or any form of higher education for that matter…).
        You might have noticed that children tend to be different from their parents, but still much more similar to them than to randomly chosen other people (and MUCH more similar to them than to a randomly chosen non-human animal). That is because genetic material is actually inherited from your parents (were you homeschooled ?). And, believe it or not, this form of vertical transfer of genetic material is actually by far the most common form of transfer and for many species even the only one. What this means is that the offspring produced in any species will, statistically, always be more similar to their parents than to other randomly chosen individuals that are not their parents and much more similar to their parents than to members of other species. If you extrapolate this process into the future and combine it with the variation (this is caused by so called “Mutation”, but we´ll get to that another time), you get a nested hierarchy of similarities between organisms. Since vertical transmission is dominant over lateral transmission of genetic material, and sometimes even the only mode of transmission, descent with modification from a common ancestor necessarily produces nested hierarchies of similarities (for a mathematical treatment, see Harris, T. E. (1989) The Theory of Branching Processes. New York: Dover.).
        Caveat: the distribution of very fast evolving characters between distantly related taxa will be indistinguishable from random noise (that´s why fast evolving characters are preferred for studying very closely related species while slow evolving ones are preferred for distantly related ones).”

        • frisbee_kid

          Umm a family tree does not produce a nested hierarchy. And we do not even see a tree with prokaryotes.

    • frisbee_kid

      And Darwin “On teh Origin of Species…”-

      In chapter 14:

      If, however, we suppose any descendant of A or of I to have become so much modified as to have lost all traces of its parentage in this case, its place in the natural system will be lost, as seems to have occurred with some few existing organisms.-Charles Darwin chapter 14

      Extinction has only defined the groups: it has by no means made them; for if every form which has ever lived on this earth were suddenly to reappear, though it would be quite impossible to give definitions by which each group could be distinguished, still a natural classification, or at least a natural arrangement, would be possible.- Charles Darwin chapter 14

      Hey, just as I claimed!

      • Andy_Schueler

        Supports none of your claims in any way, shape or form.

        • frisbee_kid

          Yes, it does. It supports my claim that the exitence of all alleged transitional forms would ruin a strict nested hierarchy.

          • Andy_Schueler

            No.

            • frisbee_kid

              Yes.

    • frisbee_kid

      A Summary of the Principles of Hierarchy Theory

      The Hierarchy theory is a dialect of general systems theory. It has emerged as part of a movement toward a general science of complexity. Rooted in the work of economist, Herbert Simon, chemist, Ilya Prigogine, and psychologist, Jean Piaget, hierarchy theory focuses upon levels of organization and issues of scale. There is significant emphasis upon the observer in the system.

      Hierarchies occur in social systems, biological structures, and in the biological taxonomies. Since scholars and laypersons use hierarchy and hierarchical concepts commonly, it would seem reasonable to have a theory of hierarchies. Hierarchy theory uses a relatively small set of principles to keep track of the complex structure and a behavior of systems with multiple levels. A set of definitions and principles follows immediately:

      Hierarchy: in mathematical terms, it is a partially ordered set. In less austere terms, a hierarchy is a collection of parts with ordered asymmetric relationships inside a whole. That is to say, upper levels are above lower levels, and the relationship upwards is asymmetric with the relationships downwards.

      Hierarchical levels: levels are populated by entities whose properties characterize the level in question. A given entity may belong to any number of levels, depending on the criteria used to link levels above and below. For example, an individual human being may be a member of the level i) human, ii) primate, iii) organism or iv) host of a parasite, depending on the relationship of the level in question to those above and below.

      Level of organization: this type of level fits into its hierarchy by virtue of set of definitions that lock the level in question to those above and below. For example, a biological population level is an aggregate of entities from the organism level of organization, but it is only so by definition. There is no particular scale involved in the population level of organization, in that some organisms are larger than some populations, as in the case of skin parasites.

      Level of observation: this type of level fits into its hierarchy by virtue of relative scaling considerations. For example, the host of a skin parasite represents the context for the population of parasites; it is a landscape, even though the host may be seen as belonging to a level of organization, organism, that is lower than the collection of parasites, a population.

      The criterion for observation: when a system is observed, there are two separate considerations. One is the spatiotemporal scale at which the observations are made. The other is the criterion for observation, which defines the system in the foreground away from all the rest in the background. The criterion for observation uses the types of parts and their relationships to each other to characterize the system in the foreground. If criteria for observation are linked together in an asymmetric fashion, then the criteria lead to levels of organization. Otherwise, criteria for observation merely generate isolated classes.

      The ordering of levels: there are several criteria whereby other levels reside above lower levels. These criteria often run in parallel, but sometimes only one or a few of them apply. Upper levels are above lower levels by virtue of: 1) being the context of, 2) offering constraint to, 3) behaving more slowly at a lower frequency than, 4) being populated by entities with greater integrity and higher bond strength than, and 5), containing and being made of – lower levels.

      Nested and non-nested hierarchies: nested hierarchies involve levels which consist of, and contain, lower levels. Non-nested hierarchies are more general in that the requirement of containment of lower levels is relaxed. For example, an army consists of a collection of soldiers and is made up of them. Thus an army is a nested hierarchy. On the other hand, the general at the top of a military command does not consist of his soldiers and so the military command is a non-nested hierarchy with regard to the soldiers in the army. Pecking orders and a food chains are also non-nested hierarchies.

      Duality in hierarchies: the dualism in hierarchies appears to come from a set of complementarities that line up with: observer-observed, process-structure, rate-dependent versus rate-independent, and part-whole. Arthur Koestler in his “Ghost in The Machine” referred to the notion of holon, which means an entity in a hierarchy that is at once a whole and at the same time a part. Thus a holon at once operates as a quasi-autonomous whole that integrates its parts, while working to integrate itself into an upper level purpose or role. The lower level answers the question “How?” and the upper level answers the question, “So what?”

      Constraint versus possibilities: when one looks at a system there are two separate reasons behind what one sees. First, it is not possible to see something if the parts of the system cannot do what is required of them to achieve the arrangement in the whole. These are the limits of physical possibility. The limits of possibility come from lower levels in the hierarchy. The second entirely separate reason for what one sees is to do with what is allowed by the upper level constraints. An example here would be that mammals have five digits. There is no physical reason for mammals having five digits on their hands and feet, because it comes not from physical limits, but from the constraints of having a mammal heritage. Any number of the digits is possible within the physical limits, but in mammals only five digits are allowed by the biological constraints. Constraints come from above, while the limits as to what is possible come from below. The concept of hierarchy becomes confused unless one makes the distinction between limits from below and limits from above. The distinction between mechanisms below and purposes above turn on the issue of constraint versus possibility. Forget the distinction, and biology becomes pointlessly confused, impossibly complicated chemistry, while chemistry becomes unwieldy physics.

      Complexity and self-simplification: Howard Pattee has identified that as a system becomes more elaborately hierarchical its behavior becomes simple. The reason is that, with the emergence of intermediate levels, the lowest level entities become constrained to be far from equilibrium. As a result, the lowest level entities lose degrees of freedom and are held against the upper level constraint to give constant behavior. Deep hierarchical structure indicates elaborate organization, and deep hierarchies are often considered as complex systems by virtue of hierarchical depth.

      Complexity versus complicatedness: a hierarchical structure with a large number of lowest level entities, but with simple organization, offers a low flat hierarchy that is complicated rather than complex. The behavior of structurally complicated systems is behaviorally elaborate and so complicated, whereas the behavior of deep hierarchically complex systems is simple.

      Hierarchy theory is as much as anything a theory of observation. It has been significantly operationalized in ecology, but has been applied relatively infrequently outside that science. There is a negative reaction to hierarchy theory in the social sciences, by virtue of implications of rigid autocratic systems or authority. When applied in a more general fashion, even liberal and non-authoritarian systems can be described effectively in hierarchical terms. There is a politically correct set of labels that avoid the word hierarchy, but they unnecessarily introduce jargon into a field that has enough special vocabulary as it is.

      • Andy_Schueler

        Doesn´t support any of your idiotic misconceptions in any way, shape or form.

        • frisbee_kid

          Everything I have said about nested hierarchies is supported by that link.

          • Andy_Schueler

            Nothing you have said about nested hierarchies is supported by that link. And even if it would, you couldn´t possibly know it because you still don´t understand the first thing about the subject.

            • frisbee_kid

              Fuck you loser. Everything I have said goes along with that link.

            • Andy_Schueler

              Because shitbag fucktard troll says so ? Nope.

            • frisbee_kid

              No, because the facts say so. That has been my reference for years.
              So go fuck yourself loser.

            • Andy_Schueler

              Choose the fucking judges and put your money where your mouth is, asshole.

            • Timothy Horton

              Joe G (and his sockpuppet Frisbee_kid) is well known in C/E discussion circles for being one of the most scientifically ignorant and cowardly douches ever to type at a keyboard. His exploits are legendary. He’s been kicked off several boards for making physical threats, got fired from at least one job for doing it too. Been banned at another board for posting porn. Once when someone called him on his offer to meet face-to-face the coward gave a phony address in a parking lot miles from his house.

              Joe G is also a compulsive liar. He got caught lying about being a Muslim to hide his YEC leanings. He’s also lied about being an Iraqi war hero, and a pilot, and an Olympic caliber power lifter, and a research scientist, and a GA programmer. In reality he’s a 400 lb. unemployed small appliance repairman with zero scientific training or understanding.

              There’s a running log of his idiotic Creationist deeds at the Panda’s Thumb forum: After The Bar Closes. Some great stories there!

            • Thanks so much for that info Timothy! I have certainly witnessed some very interesting personality traits over the months. I don’t want to ad hom too much, but some psychological problems are certainly prevalent.

              His blog is interesting. There seem to be no IDists there, just a handful of ‘evolutionists’ whom he has pissed off!

            • Jonathan, if you or anyone wants some gut busting laughs, click on this:

              http://intelligentreasoning.blogspot.com/2009/03/measuring-information-specified.html

              And this (scroll down about a quarter of the page to the comment by joe g on Mar. 11 2010,06:31):

              http://www.antievolution.org/cgi-bin/ikonboard/ikonboard.cgi?s=515eac55e9bff562;act=ST;f=14;t=6647;st=120
              ——————————————————–

              And yes joey, I saved the page on your blog, in case you alter it and lie about it like you did with another page.

            • Andy_Schueler

              Unbelievable, simply unbelievable… I can´t decide whether this is more funny than sad or the other way around.

            • Andy_Schueler

              Oh boy…. it is obvious that there is something wrong with this guy, but I would not have guessed that he is that messed up…

            • And that’s just a small portion of how messed up joey is. There’s WAY more. :)

    • frisbee_kid

      Having issues with disqus- signed in with google

    • frisbee_kid

      Nested Hierarchy

      Nested hierarchy” refers to the way taxonomic groups fit neatly and completely inside other taxonomic groups. For instance, all bats (order Chiroptera) are mammals. All mammals are vertebrates. Likewise, all whales (order Cetacea) are also mammals, and thus also vertebrates.

      While it might seem that this arrangement is obvious and unavoidable, it is not. Taxonomic groups are defined by traits and it should be possible to mix traits from multiple defined groups. An example from classical mythology is the Pegasus, a creature with features defined as both mammal and bird (class Aves). Mammals and birds are both orders, so, if pegasus existed, it would be a violation of the nested hierarchy, a creature that belonged to two seperate groups.

      Oops! Did someone say something about a creature with features defined as both mammal and bird?

      Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the platypus

      So again, just as I have claimed…

      • So you deny convergent evolution?

        • Because, if so, I detect hints of circularity…

        • frisbee_kid

          No, but convergent evolution is something else tat would ruin a nested hierarchy.

          • You have a very simplistic idea of it, then.

          • Twin Nested Hierarchies

            The two possible hierarchies, one formed by comparing morphology (the physical appearance of the organisms) and the other formed by comparing molecular data (genotype of the organisms), would be expected to be congruent if all life had originated via evolution from a common ancestor. While there are certainly discrepancies between the two nested hierarchies, the two trees certainly show an amazing degree of similarity.

            Of course, based upon the fact that the genes of an organism determines the morphology of the organism, one may expect the two trees would share a certain degree of resemblance. However, the biochemical analyses can also look at things that have very little or no influence on morphology, such as non-functional DNA or the sequence of metabolic enzymes, and end up with the same results. Also, there is no reason to assume that similar morphology demands similar genetics, as convergent evolution of marsupials and eutherian mammals will attest. Creatures such as the marsupial mouse and the eutherian mouse look very similar, but they differ a great deal in their genetics and biochemistry. This is because there are many ways for DNA to encode for the same proteins or the same regulatory elements, thus resulting the same morphology with different genetics. Therefore while common design would not predict such a congruence between trees, common descent would. Thus, common descent is greatly corroborated by such congruence.

            http://evolutionwiki.org/wiki/Nested_Hierarchy

      • Andy_Schueler

        Oops! Did someone say something about a creature with features defined as both mammal and bird?

        Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the platypus

        So again, just as I have claimed…

        Misconception that has already been addressed in the previous post:

        “Which means that the distribution of features in the leaves should be explained as much as possible by their relationship to their parent nodes (if the relation to parent nodes explains 100% of the variation in features at the leaves and all features emerge just once (Hint: all features that DO exist actually must emerge somewhere at least one time…), the consistency index would be 1). What reduces the degree of hierarchical structure is the independent (i.e. not explainable by relation to parent node) emergence of features.

        Now, list all the characteristics of a platypus that cannot be explained by their relation to their ancestors and require convergent evolution (hint: it´s one).

        Also, there is a reason why the degree of hierarchical structure is quantified, it ie because it is not a binary attribute (hint: “binary” refers to a two-state system, instead of a continuous property like the degree of hierarchical structure for a phylogeny)

        • frisbee_kid

          Parent nodes? Ancestor-descendent relationships = a non-nested hierarchy.
          Again a nested hierarchy is different than any ole hierarchal structure

          • Andy_Schueler

            Parent nodes

            A phylogeny is mathematically represented as a directed acyclic graph, and “child nodes”, “parent nodes” + “root” is the common terminology used.

            Ancestor-descendent relationships = a non-nested hierarchy.

            Moron.

            • frisbee_kid
            • Andy_Schueler

              I don´t give a fuck about your blog (which no one seems to read anyway).
              Again, I´ll let YOU choose the judges, YOU can even choose fucking Cdesign proponentsists as judges as long as they are qualified in the relevant fields (see previous threads). What more do you need ?
              Or are you to lazy for that ? If so, I´ll happily choose the judges for you ?
              Or did you bet money that you don´t even have loser ?
              Put your money where your big fat mouth is you COWARD.

            • frisbee_kid

              Denton will be one of my judges, asshole. You lose as he already agrees with me wrt transitional forms.
              And if you just want to fight- I am more than game for that too, punk.

            • Andy_Schueler

              Read what I wrote about judges being qualified (hint: Denton is a Biochemist).

              And if you just want to fight- I am more than game for that too, punk.

              How old are you ? 12 ? Does your Mom know that you are being a bad boy ?

    • frisbee_kid

      Charles Darwin’s Tree of Life is wrong and misleading, claim scientists And that is a big oops for Andy…
      Can you get a nested hierarchy when you can’t even construct a tree?

      • Aah, a small comment article from the science bastion of the Telegraph. My dad subscribes to it, and makes all sorts of pseudoscientific claims he lifts out of it. He doesn’t get far into the conversation before he is shown that their science writers are total dicks.

        That article doesn’t even list its author.

        Plus, if you read the totality of it, you should actually refine your conclusions that you seem to draw.

        You already negative equity of credibility has now got worse. THAT is your evidence?

        • frisbee_kid

          Was that supposed to refute my post?
          Earth to Jon and Andy- there isn’t a tree with prokaryotes and other organisms. there isn’t a nested hierarchy with prokaryotes and other organisms.
          What part of that don’t you understand?

          • Andy_Schueler

            Has already been explained to you. Moron.

            • frisbee_kid

              Your “explanation” is refuted by reality. And your ignorance has been exposed

              EvoTARD Commentor Bets Me $10,000 and Loses. What to do?

            • Andy_Schueler

              Riiight, you cannot explain why the explanation is inaccurate but you just know deep down in your heart that it must be wrong.
              Nice try, moron.

      • Andy_Schueler

        big oops for Andy…
        Can you get a nested hierarchy when you can’t even construct a tree?

        Yes.

        You seem to be frantically googling and randomly posting whatever you can find even though every single one of your bullshit responses so far has been comprehensively addressed in the previous thread.

        You owe me ten thousand bucks. And again – you can choose the judges to settle this matter since you are an unteachable fucktard and will not realize how wrong you are any other way. You can even choose fucking Cdesign proponentsists for all I care, as long as they can speak with authority on the matter (see previous thread) and are willing to go on the record with name + professional affiliation.

        Now it´s time to man up or chicken out, will you choose the judges, or should I, or are you not only a moron but also a chicken ?
        You owe me ten thousand bucks dude.

        • frisbee_kid

          No Andy, I have all of this saved- I have been down this road before. You lose.
          And how do I owe you money? All you have is your word that I am wrong. You have nothing else.

          • Andy_Schueler

            No Andy, I have all of this saved- I have been down this road before. You lose.

            It´s on motherfucker. Choose the judges or out yourself as a fucktard AND a chicken (since it´s already more than clear that you indeed are a fucktard).

            • frisbee_kid

              EvoTARD Commentor Bets Me $10,000 and Loses. What to do?
              OK motherfucker- you are ignorant of the concept of summativity. And taht means you are ignorant of nested hierarchies.

            • Andy_Schueler

              Ah, the little troll is getting desperate – how adorable :-).
              Keep googling troll, maybe you´ll get it.
              But anyway, you owe me ten thousand bucks.
              And I´ll repeat – YOU can choose the judges. Your choice, be a chicken and a moron, or just a moron.

          • joey ‘the welcher’ gallien, you go “down” the same dead-end road every day. You blurt and baldly assert. You bluff and act tough. You cry and lie. You offer bets but are dead set on not paying up. You attack and falsely accuse and you always “lose”.

            You’re just a broken record repeating the same old, ignorant, IDiotic crap over and over and over and over…………………

    • Andy_Schueler

      Unbelievable.

      Based on his comments so far, Joe G. actually managed to learn nothing whatsoever and still has the exact same misconceptions about this subject as he had two months ago when he started demonstrating his ignorance on this blog.
      – He still doesn´t understand why and how descent with modification from a common ancestor produces a nested hierarchy of similarities (which really does not require much more than understanding where babies come from…).
      – He still doesn´t understand that transitional forms show the intermediate states between an ancestral form and its descendants.
      – He still doesn´t understand what a nested hierarchy looks like, how it is constructed and not even what “hierarchical” even means in this context.

      And since he is apparently unwilling to let this bet be settled by judges – even though I he could choose them as long as they are qualified to speak about this matter – I guess that leaves only one option:
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZomwVcGt0LE

      Ah well, I guess I´ll never see my $10,000 from him :-).

      • frisbee_kid

        .

        He still doesn´t understand why and how descent with modification from a common ancestor produces a nested hierarchy of similarities (which really does not require much more than understanding where babies come from…).

        Family trees do not form a nested hierarchy.

        He still doesn´t understand that transitional forms show the intermediate states between an ancestral form and its descendants.

        I said that they do you fucking shit muncher.

        – He still doesn´t understand what a nested hierarchy looks like, how it is constructed and not even what “hierarchical” even means in this context

        And yet I posted how to construct one and what it looks like. IOW you are nothing but a lying loser.

        • Andy_Schueler

          Family trees do not form a nested hierarchy.

          Moron.

          I said that they do you fucking shit muncher.

          If you did, your moronic comments related to transitional forms would make even less sense.

          And yet I posted how to construct one and what it looks like. IOW you are nothing but a lying loser.

          You still think the degree of hierarchical structure is a binary property and you still don´t even understand what internal nodes represent in a cladogram or a phylogeny.

          You owe me $10,000.

          • frisbee_kid

            You still think the degree of hierarchical structure is a binary property

            Liar
            And I have other evoTARDS saying that a family tree does not form a nested hierarchy. You assholes really need to get your stories straight.

            • Andy_Schueler

              You owe me money, choose the fucking judges. What are you afraid of ? You think you are right then put your fucking money where your mouth is, asshole.

            • frisbee_kid

              YOU OWE ME MONEY BITCH- and I will sue you if you don’t pay

            • Andy_Schueler

              How many times do I have to repeat it ?
              What are you afraid of ?
              Choose the judges and put your money where your big fat mouth is, asshole.

            • You will sue Andy if he doesn’t pay you for a bet that you have CLEARLY LOST? ROFLMAO!

              Be sure to let me know when and where your suit (LOL) will be tried. I want to be there as a witness for the respondent (Andy).

    • John Grove

      Andy is awesome, love that guy! Clear thinking, amazing amount of erudition and education, witty, humorous.

    • John Grove

      JoeG has got to be the most scientifically illiterate, intellectually dishonest, unbelievably shallow, unusually incurious, abnormally unintelligent, amazingly inarticulate, fantastically uncultured, extraordinarily uneducated and apparently quite proud of all these things.

    • frisbee_kid

      Both Charles Darwin and Michael Denton agree with me wrt transitional forms ruining a strict nested hierarchy:

      Darwin agrees with me:

      Extinction has only defined the groups: it has by no means made them; for if every form which has ever lived on this earth were suddenly to reappear, though it would be quite impossible to give definitions by which each group could be distinguished, still a natural classification, or at least a natural arrangement, would be possible.- Charles Darwin chapter
      14

      Denton agrees with me:

      There is another stringent condition which must be satisfied if a hierarchic pattern is to result as the end product of an evolutionary process: no ancestral forms can be permitted to survive. This can be seen by examining the tree diagram on page 135. If any of the ancestors X, Y, or Z, or
      if any of the hypothetical transitional connecting species stationed on the main branches of the tree, had survived and had therefore to be included in the classification scheme, the distinctness of the divisions would be blurred by intermediate or partially inclusive classes and what remained of the hierarchic
      pattern would be highly disordered.- Denton, “Evolution: A Theory in Crisis” page 136 (X, Y and Z are hypothetical node populations)

      So obviously Denton would be one of my judges. ;)

      • Which, had you interacted with me on conceptual nominalism and the Problem of Species, you would understand where you are going wrong! Nested hierarchies are human taxonomical mechanisms for categorising. They are pragmatic methods of being able to sort things which, by strict definition of transition, are unsortable. Transitional forms are reality, species are human arbitrary categorising of reality.

        It is why we disagree on what species certain, say, hominid fossils belong to!

        You really need to do your homework!

    • frisbee_kid

      And more support for another one of my claims:

      Pattern pluralism and the Tree of Life
      hypothesis

      Darwin claimed that a unique inclusively hierarchical pattern of relationships between all organisms based on their similarities and differences [the Tree of Life (TOL)] was a fact of nature, for which evolution, and in particular a branching process of descent with modification,
      was the explanation. However, there is no independent evidence that the natural order is an inclusive hierarchy, and incorporation of prokaryotes into the TOL is especially problematic. The only data sets from which we might construct a universal hierarchy including prokaryotes, the sequences of genes, often disagree and can seldom be proven to agree. Hierarchical structure can always be imposed on or extracted from such data sets by algorithms designed to do so, but at its
      base the universal TOL rests on an unproven assumption about pattern that, given what we know about process, is unlikely to be broadly true. This is not to say that similarities and differences between organisms are not to be accounted
      for by evolutionary mechanisms, but descent with modification is only one of these mechanisms, and a single tree-like pattern is not the necessary (or expected) result of their collective operation. Pattern pluralism (the recognition that different evolutionary models and representations of relationships will be appropriate, and true, for different taxa or at different
      scales or for different purposes) is an attractive alternative to the quixotic pursuit of a single true TOL.

      Tree of life isn’t expected means a nested hierarchy isn’t
      expected.

      “The use of hierarchies as organizational models in systematics”, Biological Journal of the Linnean Society (1998), 63: 1–49.

      Regardless of what is eventually learned about the evolution of Clarkia/Heterogaura, the complex nature of evolutionary processes yields patterns that are more complex than can be represented by the simple hierarchical models of either monophyletic systematization or Linnaean classification.

      And that agrees with me.

      • Andy_Schueler

        Has already been explained to you, you fucking IDiot. Vertical transfer of genetic material is dominant over horizontal transfer, also in bacteria, which means that there is a highly significant degree of hierarchical structure which is (unsurprisingly) less pronounced as it is for groups where lateral gene transfer never or virtually never occurs:
        http://jbiol.com/content/8/6/59

        I´ve explained this to you at least FIVE TIMES you moron.

    • If evolution is not unguided then what is the fundamental principle of chemistry that prevents the creation of random variations in DNA during replication that creates the mutations that drive The Theory of Evolution.