65
   

Don't tell me there's no proof for evolution

 
 
anton bonnier
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 12:52 am
Rl.
How about you giving as much proof for your "beliefs" .
0 Replies
 
real life
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 01:00 am
You are free to attempt to refute anything I've said.
0 Replies
 
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 01:20 am
Here we go again.....

Unlike "scientific" theories which are open to refutation as opposed to "proof", religious beliefs are open to neither. The only way they can be evaluated is in terms of "social utility". What seems beneficial at the micro level is often perncious at the macro-level (as in jihad).

We need to distinguish between the words "proof" and "confirmation". If B proves statement A it means A must follow from observation B. If B confirms statement A it means that obervation B supports A in conjunction with other observations.
0 Replies
 
chiso
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 08:32 am
There's no proof of evolution.
0 Replies
 
rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 08:55 am
chiso wrote:
There's no proof of evolution.


Then there's no proof of anything.
0 Replies
 
real life
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 10:32 am
rosborne979 wrote:
chiso wrote:
There's no proof of evolution.


Then there's no proof of anything.


I disagree with both of these.

There is evidence that can be cited in support of evolution.

The problem is that it is not conclusive, but largely circumstantial and thus open to other interpretations as well.

But to say that 'if we haven't proved evolution then we cannot prove anything' is just as false.

There are propositions which are easily observable, repeatable and thus conclusively provable beyond reasonable doubt.

Evolution just isn't one of them.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 11:15 am
Quote:
There is evidence that can be cited in support of evolution.

The problem is that it is not conclusive, but largely circumstantial and thus open to other interpretations as well.
. You state this often , Im not aware that youve given us any "other interpretations" of evidence. Im sure this is a broad enough question so that you could bring up your best evidence. By so doing, Id like to hear about these specific"other interpretations" and how the mass of "other interpretations" evidence meshes so well.
0 Replies
 
baddog1
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 11:38 am
Was just wondering:

Who invented evolution? :wink:
0 Replies
 
rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 04:11 pm
real life wrote:
I disagree with both of these.

There is evidence that can be cited in support of evolution.

The problem is that it is not conclusive, but largely circumstantial and thus open to other interpretations as well.


Then you need to tell us what you think is conclusive. Because science has decided that there is enough evidence for evolution, both circumstantial and otherwise to render the proof conclusive. That's exactly why evolution is a scientific fact.

real life wrote:
But to say that 'if we haven't proved evolution then we cannot prove anything' is just as false.


To the degree that anything can be proven, evolution has been proven. Evolution is a scientific fact.

If you want to argue this point, then you must define "proof" so that we can see how you are treating it differently from how science treats it, because you clearly ARE treating it differently.

real life wrote:
There are propositions which are easily observable, repeatable and thus conclusively provable beyond reasonable doubt.


And there are also propositions which are supported by such overwhelming and inter-related circumstantial evidence, that they are thus conclusively proved beyond any reasonable doubt.

And evolution is definitely one of them.

Just because your personal definition of proof beyond reasonable doubt requires direct observation, doesn't mean the scientific definition of proof requires it.

If you want to agree with that, then we can just concede each relative perspective and move on.

None of which changes the fact that evolution is a scientific fact, as determined by the standard definitions which science works with.

Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District - Decision of the Court (Continued) wrote:
As the National Academy of Sciences (hereinafter "NAS") was recognized by experts for both parties as the "most prestigious" scientific association in this country, we will accordingly cite to its opinion where appropriate. (1:94, 160-61 (Miller); 14:72 (Alters); 37:31 (Minnich)). NAS is in agreement that science is limited to empirical, observable and ultimately testable data: "Science is a particular way of knowing about the world. In science, explanations are restricted to those that can be inferred from the confirmable data - the results obtained through observations and experiments that can be substantiated by other scientists. Anything that can be observed or measured is amenable to scientific investigation. Explanations that cannot be based upon empirical evidence are not part of science." ( P-649 at 27).
0 Replies
 
hingehead
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 04:28 pm
From the Guardian:

Mutation in full flight


Evolution is usually a slow process but it can move rapidly in lethal viruses such as bird flu

Johnjoe McFadden
Thursday April 13, 2006
The Guardian


Creationists often claim that evolution is just a theory since no one has ever observed it. Being generally a slow process, it is hard to catch evolution in action. But it isn't always slow. For fast replicating pathogens, such as the bird flu virus, evolutionary change can be rapid and lethal. Even Darwin, the originator of the theory of natural selection, lamented the "clumsy, wasteful, blundering, low and horribly cruel" nature of its action. The evolution of the H5N1 strain of bird flu is now advancing on a million wings, and its course may seal the fate of many of us.

Article continues

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The snail's pace of animal evolution is usually tracked by examining changes in anatomical structures, such as the coil of a shell or the length of a bone. But microbes have neither bones nor shells, so evolutionary biologists have to make do with measuring molecular changes. Each time an organism replicates it must copy its genetic material - DNA or RNA (a close relative of DNA) - and there is the potential for introducing errors: mutations. Our cells devote a lot of resources to minimising copying errors, but viruses are less picky and tolerate higher mutation rates. The speed of evolution depends on the mutation rate and the frequency of replication. Large animals that take years to reproduce evolve slowly, but viruses that can replicate within minutes can evolve within hours.
A central tenet of evolutionary theory is that mutations are random. Each time the virus reproduces it rolls the genetic dice to generate progeny just a little different from itself. The grim reaper of natural selection then separates the wheat from the chaff of evolutionary innovation, favouring the survival of only the fittest progeny. So each time the bird flu virus replicates, it generates new mutants - any one of which may increase its fitness for humans. Much of the pathology of infectious diseases is the parasite's means of getting out of one host and into another. Respiratory pathogens make you cough because coughs and sneezes spread diseases. The H5N1 strain causes diarrhoea because the virus is often spread by bird droppings.

In every infected bird is a H5N1 virus busily replicating and throwing off mutants, any one of which may acquire the key that could unlock our respiratory cells. This will not be an advantage if it happens in a bird, but if the mutation emerges while the virus is replicating in a human victim, then natural selection will kick in to select mutant viruses that can replicate in the human respiratory tract. Once there, the virus could cause the coughs and sneezes that would allow its spread to lots more victims. At least two of the three previous pandemics of influenza this century (1957 and 1968) were caused by avian flu viruses.

So far there have been only about 200 cases of H5N1 influenza in humans, vastly fewer than the millions of cases estimated in birds, so the evolutionary dynamics of H5N1 are still firmly tied to their feathered hosts. However, each human victim is effectively a Darwinian roulette wheel, with natural selection acting as the banker ready to reward any new viruses capable of crossing the species barrier.

We aren't there yet. The fact that the H5N1 strain has infected only a few humans is testimony to its low rate of infectivity. Given enough time and enough human hosts a species jump becomes almost inevitable. But nobody knows how much time, or how many hosts are needed to generate a pandemic strain. An outbreak of the H5N1 disease in Hong Kong in 1997 was controlled by extensive culling of domestic fowl. Our best hope is that this outbreak will be similarly controlled or burn itself out before the evolutionary dynamics of H5N1 can shift to the human population.

· Johnjoe McFadden is professor of molecular genetics at the University of Surrey and author of Quantum Evolution
0 Replies
 
hingehead
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 04:33 pm
From the Guardian:

Mutation in full flight


Evolution is usually a slow process but it can move rapidly in lethal viruses such as bird flu

Johnjoe McFadden
Thursday April 13, 2006
The Guardian


Creationists often claim that evolution is just a theory since no one has ever observed it. Being generally a slow process, it is hard to catch evolution in action. But it isn't always slow. For fast replicating pathogens, such as the bird flu virus, evolutionary change can be rapid and lethal. Even Darwin, the originator of the theory of natural selection, lamented the "clumsy, wasteful, blundering, low and horribly cruel" nature of its action. The evolution of the H5N1 strain of bird flu is now advancing on a million wings, and its course may seal the fate of many of us.

Article continues

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
The snail's pace of animal evolution is usually tracked by examining changes in anatomical structures, such as the coil of a shell or the length of a bone. But microbes have neither bones nor shells, so evolutionary biologists have to make do with measuring molecular changes. Each time an organism replicates it must copy its genetic material - DNA or RNA (a close relative of DNA) - and there is the potential for introducing errors: mutations. Our cells devote a lot of resources to minimising copying errors, but viruses are less picky and tolerate higher mutation rates. The speed of evolution depends on the mutation rate and the frequency of replication. Large animals that take years to reproduce evolve slowly, but viruses that can replicate within minutes can evolve within hours.
A central tenet of evolutionary theory is that mutations are random. Each time the virus reproduces it rolls the genetic dice to generate progeny just a little different from itself. The grim reaper of natural selection then separates the wheat from the chaff of evolutionary innovation, favouring the survival of only the fittest progeny. So each time the bird flu virus replicates, it generates new mutants - any one of which may increase its fitness for humans. Much of the pathology of infectious diseases is the parasite's means of getting out of one host and into another. Respiratory pathogens make you cough because coughs and sneezes spread diseases. The H5N1 strain causes diarrhoea because the virus is often spread by bird droppings.

In every infected bird is a H5N1 virus busily replicating and throwing off mutants, any one of which may acquire the key that could unlock our respiratory cells. This will not be an advantage if it happens in a bird, but if the mutation emerges while the virus is replicating in a human victim, then natural selection will kick in to select mutant viruses that can replicate in the human respiratory tract. Once there, the virus could cause the coughs and sneezes that would allow its spread to lots more victims. At least two of the three previous pandemics of influenza this century (1957 and 1968) were caused by avian flu viruses.

So far there have been only about 200 cases of H5N1 influenza in humans, vastly fewer than the millions of cases estimated in birds, so the evolutionary dynamics of H5N1 are still firmly tied to their feathered hosts. However, each human victim is effectively a Darwinian roulette wheel, with natural selection acting as the banker ready to reward any new viruses capable of crossing the species barrier.

We aren't there yet. The fact that the H5N1 strain has infected only a few humans is testimony to its low rate of infectivity. Given enough time and enough human hosts a species jump becomes almost inevitable. But nobody knows how much time, or how many hosts are needed to generate a pandemic strain. An outbreak of the H5N1 disease in Hong Kong in 1997 was controlled by extensive culling of domestic fowl. Our best hope is that this outbreak will be similarly controlled or burn itself out before the evolutionary dynamics of H5N1 can shift to the human population.

· Johnjoe McFadden is professor of molecular genetics at the University of Surrey and author of Quantum Evolution
0 Replies
 
hingehead
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 04:46 pm
Please note that I have not posted the above as 'proof', I know that nothing would satisfy Real Life (even if I grew a new organ that exuded twinkies - and passed it onto my offspring).

I see this ongoing stuff about evolution v creation as a sideshow of the faithful vs the faithless, but for some reason the evolution battleground is the considered the front line by the faithful (I would have thought that human creation of the bible would worry them more). How come christianity came to terms with a non-geocentric universe (ie Gallileo) but accept evolution - even as much of science does, not as absolute truth but as a very useful theory.

Why isn't real life demanding proof that god exists...
0 Replies
 
real life
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 08:27 pm
rosborne979 wrote:
real life wrote:
I disagree with both of these.

There is evidence that can be cited in support of evolution.

The problem is that it is not conclusive, but largely circumstantial and thus open to other interpretations as well.


Then you need to tell us what you think is conclusive. Because science has decided that there is enough evidence for evolution, both circumstantial and otherwise to render the proof conclusive. That's exactly why evolution is a scientific fact.

real life wrote:
But to say that 'if we haven't proved evolution then we cannot prove anything' is just as false.


To the degree that anything can be proven, evolution has been proven. Evolution is a scientific fact.

If you want to argue this point, then you must define "proof" so that we can see how you are treating it differently from how science treats it, because you clearly ARE treating it differently.

real life wrote:
There are propositions which are easily observable, repeatable and thus conclusively provable beyond reasonable doubt.


And there are also propositions which are supported by such overwhelming and inter-related circumstantial evidence, that they are thus conclusively proved beyond any reasonable doubt.

And evolution is definitely one of them.

Just because your personal definition of proof beyond reasonable doubt requires direct observation, doesn't mean the scientific definition of proof requires it.

If you want to agree with that, then we can just concede each relative perspective and move on.

None of which changes the fact that evolution is a scientific fact, as determined by the standard definitions which science works with.

Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District - Decision of the Court (Continued) wrote:
As the National Academy of Sciences (hereinafter "NAS") was recognized by experts for both parties as the "most prestigious" scientific association in this country, we will accordingly cite to its opinion where appropriate. (1:94, 160-61 (Miller); 14:72 (Alters); 37:31 (Minnich)). NAS is in agreement that science is limited to empirical, observable and ultimately testable data: "Science is a particular way of knowing about the world. In science, explanations are restricted to those that can be inferred from the confirmable data - the results obtained through observations and experiments that can be substantiated by other scientists. Anything that can be observed or measured is amenable to scientific investigation. Explanations that cannot be based upon empirical evidence are not part of science." ( P-649 at 27).


Funny that the definition you quote emphasizes that science is limited to empirical, observable data; but you trash me for asking for observable evidence.
0 Replies
 
hingehead
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 08:37 pm
real life wrote:

Funny that the definition you quote emphasizes that science is limited to empirical, observable data; but you trash me for asking for observable evidence.


Actually you seem to be running around in circles

real life wrote:


There is evidence that can be cited in support of evolution.

The problem is that it is not conclusive, but largely circumstantial and thus open to other interpretations as well.


Why don't you just admit that your opinion is largely formed by your religious beliefs. And that those religious beliefs, understandably, stand up less well to scientific investigation than evolution does.

Personally I don't understand why the faithful just get over it - every other time science has contradicted the bible with overwhelming evidence the powers that be say, that it's only an error of interpretation or that the bible is figurative not literal - so why not do it for evolution? Evolutionary theory speaks to me at a level of common sense, not because I think it's proof there's no God - but that seems to be what the issue is with some of the faithful.

PS

Rapid shift in natural selection reported
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Nov. 20 (UPI) -- U.S. evolutionary scientists say they have found evolution as a process can occur during eons or within months as a population's needs change.

In a study of island lizards exposed to a new predator, evolutionary biology and organismic Professor Jonathan Losos and colleagues at Harvard University found natural selection dramatically changed direction during a very short time -- within a single generation -- favoring first longer and then shorter hind legs.

"Because of its epochal scope, evolutionary biology is often caricatured as incompatible with controlled experimentation," said Losos, who did much of the work before joining Harvard this year from Washington University in St. Louis.

"Recent work has shown, however, that evolutionary biology can be studied on short time scales and that predictions about it can be tested experimentally," said Losos, who is also curator in herpetology at the Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoology. "We predicted, and then demonstrated, a reversal in the direction of natural selection acting on limb length in a population of lizards."

The research by Losos, Thomas Schoener and David Spiller of the University of California-Davis, and graduate study R. Brian Langerhans appears in the journal Science.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.
0 Replies
 
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 09:50 pm
Nice work Hinge !!
0 Replies
 
Pauligirl
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 10:42 pm
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2006/10/images/061025-oldest-bee_big.jpg
0 Replies
 
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 11:06 pm
My god made that ( along with everything else ) just to test your faith Pauligirl !!

:wink:
0 Replies
 
rosborne979
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 11:21 pm
real life wrote:
Funny that the definition you quote emphasizes that science is limited to empirical, observable data; but you trash me for asking for observable evidence.


We have tons of observable evidence, but that's not what you've been asking for. You've been asking for observation of evolution itself, something which cannot happen rapidly enough for us to observe directly.

However, science does not require something to be observed directly in order to prove it. Science only requires that evidence be limited to empirical, observable DATA.

You either need to read more carefully, or take your blinders off.
0 Replies
 
real life
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 11:32 pm
hingehead wrote:
real life wrote:

Funny that the definition you quote emphasizes that science is limited to empirical, observable data; but you trash me for asking for observable evidence.


Actually you seem to be running around in circles

real life wrote:


There is evidence that can be cited in support of evolution.

The problem is that it is not conclusive, but largely circumstantial and thus open to other interpretations as well.


Why don't you just admit that your opinion is largely formed by your religious beliefs. And that those religious beliefs, understandably, stand up less well to scientific investigation than evolution does.

Personally I don't understand why the faithful just get over it - every other time science has contradicted the bible with overwhelming evidence the powers that be say, that it's only an error of interpretation or that the bible is figurative not literal - so why not do it for evolution? Evolutionary theory speaks to me at a level of common sense, not because I think it's proof there's no God - but that seems to be what the issue is with some of the faithful.

PS

Rapid shift in natural selection reported
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Nov. 20 (UPI) -- U.S. evolutionary scientists say they have found evolution as a process can occur during eons or within months as a population's needs change.

In a study of island lizards exposed to a new predator, evolutionary biology and organismic Professor Jonathan Losos and colleagues at Harvard University found natural selection dramatically changed direction during a very short time -- within a single generation -- favoring first longer and then shorter hind legs.

"Because of its epochal scope, evolutionary biology is often caricatured as incompatible with controlled experimentation," said Losos, who did much of the work before joining Harvard this year from Washington University in St. Louis.

"Recent work has shown, however, that evolutionary biology can be studied on short time scales and that predictions about it can be tested experimentally," said Losos, who is also curator in herpetology at the Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoology. "We predicted, and then demonstrated, a reversal in the direction of natural selection acting on limb length in a population of lizards."

The research by Losos, Thomas Schoener and David Spiller of the University of California-Davis, and graduate study R. Brian Langerhans appears in the journal Science.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.


How many generations of lizards are included in this 12 month study?

Probably very few.

What apparently happened is that both longer legged (relatively speaking) and shorter legged lizards of the same species (image that. Just as there are both tall humans and short humans living now!) were living at the same time on the islands.

The authors of this study found no new trait, or even modification of an existing trait. What they 'found' was 'selection'.

But they went out to 'find evolution' and shazam! they found it.

Why did both long and short legged lizards ALREADY exist there?

Why had not evolution 'selected' for one or the other a long time before our esteemed scientists landed upon the cays?

Surely over the past thousands of years evolution had plenty of time to 'select' for either long or short legs, didn't it?
0 Replies
 
real life
 
  1  
Reply Wed 29 Nov, 2006 11:41 pm
rosborne979 wrote:
real life wrote:
Funny that the definition you quote emphasizes that science is limited to empirical, observable data; but you trash me for asking for observable evidence.


We have tons of observable evidence, but that's not what you've been asking for. You've been asking for observation of evolution itself, something which cannot happen rapidly enough for us to observe directly.

However, science does not require something to be observed directly in order to prove it. Science only requires that evidence be limited to empirical, observable DATA.

You either need to read more carefully, or take your blinders off.


Science requires that inferences be treated as inferences, not as facts.

One may observe a hairless dog, and infer that he 'evolved' that way due to global warming.

Then one meets his owner who took him to the groomer's for a close clip to give him relief from the summer heat.

Evolutionists treat inferences as fact because they assume evolution in order to prove it.
0 Replies
 
 

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