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What hell is this?

I’ve just discovered that my friend Richard Buggs is in some kind of trouble for having said what everyone obviously knows, that chimpanzees are NOT 98% human (and therefore humans are not 98% chimpanzee).

Guys, have you ever even considered dating a female chimp?

Yuh, thought so.

Common ancestry? Well, it’s way easier to defend if we start with the fact that humans and chimps are NOT obviously all that similar. So starting with a lower (believable) figure would be a better way to begin than starting with a higher (unbelievable) figure.

That’s all Buggs was trying to do. But, to keep the UK government-funded trolls at bay, Buggs clarified:

Given these statistics, it is factually incorrect to say that humans are 99% the same as chimpanzees. Yet, just last month, the Natural History Museum in London and the University of Chicago Press in the USA published a book entitled “99% Ape: How evolution adds up.” This misleading title was doubtless chosen by a marketing guru rather than the editor, who is a reputable and distinguished scientist in plant evolutionary ecology (the field in which I did my doctoral research). Such promotion of the ”myth of 1%” to the public as evidence for evolution is probably why some non-scientists have suggested on the internet that my earlier article, dispelling this myth, is somehow a death-blow to evolution – it is not.

Look, I am totally sorry that my friend Buggs is pestered by these creepy trolls. Can anyone call the trolls off? Or is this going to end like another Michael Reiss “sinner in the hands of an angry God.” story?

And DON’T try telling me that some supposed Christian Brit toff like Denis Alexander is going to, like, do something about it.

We know that if he cared, he would have done it already …

Dammit, Brits, we’ve bailed you out of two World Wars. Don’t force us to do it again. My Dad was one of the very few survivors of his Canadian air force unit.

It is overwhelmingly obvious that Darwinism and its attendant =isms are a bunch of crap. How many of your own must you feed to the shredders before you recognize that?

Hey, I’m a Canuck (really, honestly) and we’re a-watchin’! And we don’t see why you need us to tell you.. Maybe this is the day when you need us and all you get is awful silence.

Richard, in your last defence, if you are betrayed by all hands, come to Canada!

Traditional Canadians are fighting back against the most worthless and disgusting mob you have ever imagined, who only want to plunder us and have no concern whether Canada even survives as a country.

But we ARE fighting back. And GOD is watching. So all, look out.

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74 Responses to What hell is this?

  1. Hi all: first comment.

    Now, I’m no expert on human evolution, but isn’t it the case that Buggs isn’t either? I mean, isn’t he a botanist whose peer-reviewed publications are in plant biology? Wouldn’t it be better to make an argument like this in a peer-reviewed publication (where the 99% figure got knocked down) rather than in a small-circulation Dutch newspaper?

    Just a thought.

  2. I can’t see how Dr. Buggs is “in some kind of trouble,” either. He writes that “Several people have emailed me to ask questions, or tell me I am wrong.” How this constitutes “trouble” or an attack on funding is unclear.

  3. Denyse

    Unfortunately Reformatorisch Dagblad does not operate on a Sunday so it is hard to find out what trouble Richard is in or what he did to deserve or not deserve it.

    There is a short explanation of the various ways you can measure the difference between Chimpanzee and Human genome here. It is based on a symposium on the subject published in Nature which probably has the edge over Reformatorisch Dagblad as a source. It looks like it is all a question of how you measure the difference – which doesn’t surprise me.

    I am confused about the connection between this episode the second world war? (I am British and my father was also a bomber pilot)

  4. The Buggs article was discussed in the Questioning the Tree of Life thread, starting here.

  5. ribczynski

    I deleted your first comment on this post because of the snide tone. I’ve seen your arguments, and they are usually mostly civil, so I usually have no problem…But this comment flew all over me. Do not be rude, snide, or have any condescending demeanor, or I will ban you.

  6. Clive,

    My comment expressed incredulity at one of Denyse’s assertions and presented my reasons for disagreeing.

    It was far less rude, snide or condescending than some of the comments directed at me and other skeptics by ID supporters here at UD, including more than one moderator.

    I’m not complaining about those comments, but I am complaining about the double standard.

    Someone at AtBC saved my comment and posted it. Readers can see it here and judge for themselves.

  7. Your comment had a condescending tone. I don’t mind one bit that you present your arguments, just keep them properly respectful. I apologize on behalf of anyone who has treated you unduly disrespectful that’s associated with UD. That’s no reason to act that way yourself. Let’s just stick to civil and respectful arguments and discussions. Otherwise, I will ban you. There’s no double standard in that.

    I have to ask, why do people record our comments and post them on that website you linked?

  8. “I have to ask, why do people record our comments and post them on that website you linked?”

    Because UD moderators have a reputation for deleting comments unreasonably. I am not sure to what extent this reputation is deserved. The situation seems to have improved dramatically recently and some comments are lost accidentally rather than intentionally. Nevertheless retaining deleted comments provides a way of judging this.

    I struggle to see what was disrespectful about ribczynski’s comment. It is certainly a lot more respectful than Denyse’s original post. Please don’t slip back into the old ways of banning anything that is slightly feisty. Look at the fascinating and in-depth discussion that arose here by allowing some direct talk.

  9. Mark,

    The Professor Olofsson thread is very cool and the Professor is making clarifying comments about his point of view fairly constructive ones about ours.

    And he has yet to call anyone a “creationist” or imply/demand that someone’s position should not be considered due to that someone’s religious leanings.

    If a poster uses the “c” word in an attempt to dismiss an argument, the default should be to delete the post. For a second offense, the default should be to delete the poster.

    And I hate this new format where you can’t see what the poster said in recent comments.

  10. Before this degenerates into a pie fight, can someone address the question I raised above: to wit, is there any evidence for the claims Denyse makes, or are they hyperbolic?

  11. Hi all,

    I doubt the trouble that Buggs is worried about is with his newspaper editor (to whom give my regards), but rather with colleagues (are they fronting the 98% thing?)

    Given that science education consultant Michael Reiss lost his job in a recent Royal Society purge, I take the threat to Buggs seriously, unless he himself tells me not to.

    Heck, the Expelled film is a documentary, not fiction.

    Where I differ with Buggs (and Reiss?) is that I don’t think the best way to handle stuff like this is to keep it quiet.

    I think we should give maximum publicity to the sort of people who threaten others over issues of legitimate disagreement, like how to count genes or teach kids.

    In Canada, we have a name for that – we call it “denormalization.”

    It just means that we stop treating such people’s behaviour as normal. We call attention to it as abnormal behaviour, and ask what can be done about it.

    In any event, the obvious reason for the 98% claim is to minimize the difference between humans and chimps, primarily for *political* reasons. If it was really about science, then Buggs and somebody else would be free to have a scholarly dispute and hardly anyone would care.

    You can be pretty sure that when science issues become so controversial that people are writing to me about their careers being on the line, it’s not about the science at all.

    It’s about some questionable ideology that science is supposed to bolster.

    So add this word to your dictionary: Denormalization

  12. But what evidence is there that Buggs is in any kind of trouble?

    And a second question: is a post defending Buggs by noting that “GOD is watching” likely to help?

  13. RoyK,

    1. He tells me so. Having heard individuals as varied as Guillermo Gonzalez and Rick Sternberg tell me the same thing, I have no good reason to doubt it, but would be happy to learn he is mistaken.

    2. GOD is watching is intended for theistic evolutionist Denis Alexander, in case he hadn’t noticed, not for Richard Dawkins who won’t believe it. Presumably, however, both of them will write tomorrow morning to reassure Dr. Buggs that he has nothing to worry about.

  14. tribune7 wrote:

    And he has yet to call anyone a “creationist” or imply/demand that someone’s position should not be considered due to that someone’s religious leanings.

    If a poster uses the “c” word in an attempt to dismiss an argument, the default should be to delete the post. For a second offense, the default should be to delete the poster.

    Trib,

    If I were saying in effect that “Buggs is a creationist; therefore his argument is wrong”, then you might have a point. But I’m not.

    I’m saying that Buggs is a creationist, publishing in a newspaper run by creationists, writing on a hot-button issue for creationists. Creationists do not accept common ancestry. Therefore it is unreasonable to conclude that defending common ancestry was “all Buggs was trying to do” in the article.

    It’s legitimate and relevant to use the “c word” in this context.

  15. I still don’t understand Buggs’s strategy. He’s not an expert in hominid evolution: he’s a botanist. The revisions to human/chimp DNA similarity are ongoing and published in scientific journals. Those publications are subject to challenge by others. Buggs avoids that route entirely and publishes a speculative figure that is wildly different, but not in a place that is subject to peer review or challenge. And when he gets “several” critical emails, he apparently complains to you that he’s being persecuted or something.

    Why didn’t he publish a study or letter in a scientific journal? (Again, the history shows that critical revisions were published in such journals, so it’s simply not the case that reasoned critiques will be ignored.)

    Why should his claim be taken seriously since it’s not published in such a journal? Alternatively, why should his claim be exempt from the normal process of critique? If it’s nonsense, and someone says it’s nonsense (rib made some compelling arguments on another thread, linked above), does that amount to being “pestered”? He’s the one who went outside the normal channels to make the claim.

  16. RoyK,

    Let me explain the context of the situation. From what I’ve heard about him Dr. Buggs writes a monthly column whose target demographic is Dutch teenagers learning English. He’s a research geneticist so he writes about what he knows from his work. I’m guessing he’s broaching on technical subjects so that the English-learners gain more breadth in their understanding of the English language.

    Yet people are apparently getting quite upset about this which is odd considering he makes it very clear that 1) this is a rough estimate 2) more research is obviously needed 3) this is not “somehow a death-blow to evolution” in his opinion. He’s not attempting to make a major scientific statement, he’s just recalling his current knowledge on this topic.

    So the real question is not “why did he not publish this in a scientific journal”, but why are people so bothered by his simple article that they feel the need to attack him. Because some Creationists decided to quote him (perhaps unfairly, considering the context)? If so, why should this be a reason? For example, should people be personally attacking others quoted by ID proponents like Margulis, MacNeill, and Provine because we agree on some but not all points?

  17. Seems an awfully strange way to teach English.

    In fact, he’s not writing about what he “knows from his work,” as his research is entirely devoted to plants. Moreover, he doesn’t “know” this about DNA — he’s making a new and controversial argument about a subject outside his area of expertise. He’s also written about ID for other publics. Did he think nobody would notice?

    If I want to learn a language, I want to learn the language, not somebody’s idiosyncratic theories. In fact, if I don’t know the language well, it will be that much harder to evaluate the theories.

    If you’re right, he’s making a controversial argument to an audience of minors who are, by their youth and lack of linguistic expertise, doubly unqualified to critique it. That’s far worse than what I originally thought.

    I’m unaware of any “personal” attacks on Dr. Buggs. Is there any direct evidence of those?

  18. Patrick,

    Buggs made a scientific claim and used questionable (if not downright dishonest) arguments to justify it.

    Don’t you think criticism is warranted in such a case?

  19. O’Leary

    In any event, the obvious reason for the 98% claim is to minimize the difference between humans and chimps, primarily for *political* reasons.

    I’m interested in those *reasons*. Do suppose you could expand on that? Can you give some further examples, as it seems to me I had not heard of such a “98%” consipriacy before, and it would require one to maintain such across so many boundaries (both political and geograpic).

    I suppose it may have something to do with the traction being gained in Turkey and other similar places by the more religious factions taking an expanded role in local goverment, education etc?

    Who ever heard of a politician using man’s similarity to chimps as a political platform? Not exactly a vote winner in any case, but where does the 98% figure come into politics?

  20. tribune7 wrote:

    And I hate this new format where you can’t see what the poster said in recent comments.

    I second Trib’s complaint. And it’s not just that you no longer see the first line or two of a person’s comment — you also see only the five most recent comments.

    This means that when someone makes a comment on an older, less active thread, it quickly scrolls off the list so that people don’t know about it unless they explicitly check the thread.

    P.S. Using the RSS feed for comments is a way around the problem, but (a) many people don’t know about it, and (b) the “Comments RSS” link on the sidebar (under “Meta”) doesn’t work.

  21. ribczynski wrote:

    Buggs made a scientific claim and used questionable (if not downright dishonest) arguments to justify it.

    …and of course no intelligent design proponent (“cdesign proponentsist”) has ever done such a thing before, so you are all properly horrified and offended.

    While it may be “factually incorrect to say that humans are 99% the same as chimpanzees” how does it provide aid and comfort to common descent denialists to say humans are only 95% or 76% or 73% the same as chimpanzees? We’re all still primates, still mostly identical to chimps and bonobos, and the various variances in percentage of identical genetic material shouldn’t make a difference…should they?

  22. RoyK

    If you’re right, he’s making a controversial argument to an audience of minors who are, by their youth and lack of linguistic expertise, doubly unqualified to critique it. That’s far worse than what I originally thought.

    I feel compelled to point out that some could say that could be applied to the idea of teaching strengths and weaknesses with regard to controversial theories such as evolution.

    But you did not mean that did you?

    Patrick

    Because some Creationists decided to quote him (perhaps unfairly, considering the context)?

    These are typical creationist tatics I’m afraid. In my mind they defy the teachings of the one they claim to worship – if the only way you can advance your cause is via dishonest methods then perhaps it’s time that they looked for an alternative way of making their case.

  23. To go back to the start if i may, O’Leary

    Common ancestry? Well, it’s way easier to defend

    Does common descent need defending? I realise what the name of this blog is, but what are you saying here?

    and therefore humans are not 98% chimpanzee

    I know the figures that have been bandied about for years are now being shown to be innaccurate. But what would be your guess as to the % that humans “are” chimpanzee?

    1%
    50%
    0%
    ?
    Pray tell.

  24. Mark, you said:

    “Because UD moderators have a reputation for deleting comments unreasonably. I am not sure to what extent this reputation is deserved. The situation seems to have improved dramatically recently and some comments are lost accidentally rather than intentionally. Nevertheless retaining deleted comments provides a way of judging this.”

    So these folks at this other site record our conversations for the sole purpose of retaining a possibly deleted comment? I read their thread, and that may be partially true, but, they also make their own comments on the post, and use our various comments for their strange humor. They look like a whole group of condescending people. It seems to me as if they’re a group of people that obviously cannot say the sorts of remarks that they want on this site, so they’ve made their own site for that purpose. They even circulated my question as to why they record our conversations, as I’m sure they will circulate this conversation too. To which, by the way, no one had a valid response.

    I don’t mind arguments Mark, I really don’t. But I won’t tolerate certain things that are inappropriate. My moderation policy regarding inappropriateness will be like one determining what is obscene, I will know it when I see it. That’s the best general outline I can give you.

  25. #24:

    I don’t mind arguments Mark, I really don’t. But I won’t tolerate certain things that are inappropriate. My moderation policy regarding inappropriateness will be like one determining what is obscene, I will know it when I see it. That’s the best general outline I can give you.

    Surely you have criteria. If you do, please provide them.

    If you don’t, why should anyone take you seriously?

  26. I still don’t get this one bit. A ID proponent publishes something outside his area of expertise. Incredibly, this is apparently associated with increasing the English literacy of Dutch teenagers. The calculation seems silly the more you look at it — a back-of-the-envelope type of guess — yet somehow presented as more reasonable than estimates being hashed out in the professional literature. YECers pick up on the estimate and trumpet it, and this gets the original author into unspecified “trouble.” He complains about this trouble to Ms. O’Leary, who breathlessly amplifies it but provides no evidence — none — to support the allegation.

    Another thing I don’t understand: Ms. O’Leary clearly knows about the Nazis, as she mentions the Second World War. Yet she labels the Bloc Québécois as “the most worthless and disgusting mob you have ever imagined.” What makes the BQ a “mob”? Has it done anything like Kristallnacht (which took place 70 years ago last month)?

  27. I told you my criteria. Inappropriateness is determined on a case by case basis, some arbitors will be condescension, name-calling, rudeness, incivility, etc.

    And I reckon you should take me seriously because I can delete your comments.

  28. I was curious so I researched the claims a bit more. The earliest I could find Buggs making this argument wasn’t in the Reformatorisch Dagblad article. It was in September 2008 in a handout Buggs prepared for the Christian Study Center in Gainesville Florida. (pdf format)

    http://christianstudycenter.or.....091508.pdf

    The main purpose of the article seems to be Buggs arguing that Humans should be considered a distinct category separate from the rest of the animal kingdom.

    Maybe I’m missing something, but that sure sounds like Biblical special creation to me.

  29. thornton [28], good digging! I wonder if any further digging will reveal anything like the threat scenario Ms. O’Leary relates, or if, as I suspect, not so much.

  30. thorton,

    Exactly what do you know about Biblical Special Creation?

    And if you don’t like the conclusion all you have to do is provide the data which links the anatomical and physiological differences to the genetic differences.

    To ribczynski,

    All evos ever do is make scientific claims and use questionable (if not downright dishonest) arguments to justify them.

  31. to RoyK,

    If you nthink there is something wrong with Dr Buggs’ figures all you have to do is find the scientific data that refutes it.

    But instead yoiu attack Dr Buggs.

    That is typical of people who don’t have a clue. Which in turn is typical of evolutionists.

  32. Joseph [31], rib already did so in the link at [4] above. There he says:

    Buggs is suggesting that a second copy of a matching sequence should be counted as a mismatch. That means the second copy cancels out the first, and it’s as if there were no match at all!

    That seems like an obvious flaw.

  33. Also Joseph [31], I have not attacked Dr. Buggs. You, on the other hand, have attacked me. Pot, meet kettle.

  34. PhilipBaxter wrote:

    Who ever heard of a politician using man’s similarity to chimps as a political platform? Not exactly a vote winner in any case, but where does the 98% figure come into politics?

    Of course there’s no Dr. Zaius running for public office yet, but there are political groups out there pushing for chimps to declared legal persons (a right not granted to human fetuses in many parts of the world, I might add).

    This issue has even gone to court, though it was defeated. For now.

    The groups pushing for human rights to be extended to animals are not going to evaporate anytime soon. Like the majority of political groups, they are well funded and have the support of the intelligentsia.

    Then again, you don’t need to be part of the intellectual elite to discern why it would be advantageous to say humans and animals are practically the same.

  35. RoyK,

    I answered rib in another thread.

    Top wit- a second copy, if it is not matched, should be counted as a mismatch.

    ANYTHING that doesn’t match is a mismatch- duh.

    And only the first copy cancels out the copy in the other genome.

    Furthermore rib isn’t any kind of authority. If he/ she is then the theory is in more trouble than I thought.

  36. My response to rib:

    rib:
    This is absurd. Buggs is suggesting that a second copy of a matching sequence should be counted as a mismatch.

    EVERY difference must be counted.

    rib:
    That means the second copy cancels out the first, and it’s as if there were no match at all!

    That is a stupid inference. It does no such thing. One of the copies matches the one in the other genome. The leftover copy is the only copy that gets counted as a difference.

    And in the end if no one can link the genetic differences to the anatomical and physiological differences what you are doing isn’t science.

  37. Joseph [30] says

    [i]“Exactly what do you know about Biblical Special Creation?”[/i]

    Quite a bit, being raised in a very religious family and having read the Bible multiple times. For example, I know that requiring Humans be separate and special from all other creatures is one of the central tenets. Dr. Buggs is a proclaimed Fundamentalist Christian and a YEC. Why do you think he wouldn’t be trying to support that position by any means?

    What do [b]you[/b] know about evolutionary biology and genetics?

    If Dr. Buggs wanted to make a serious scientific critique, why do you think he published his ideas in a handout to a Christian church instead of a professional scientific journal? And please don’t insult the intelligence of the board be claiming fear of The Evil Evo Conspiracy stopped him.

  38. For example, I know that requiring Humans be separate and special from all other creatures is one of the central tenets.

    Umm ALL creatures are special with relation to each other in the Creation scenario.

    What do you think “reproduce after its kind” refers to?

    And BTW it is a FACT that any idea that opposes the mainstream pap will not get published. Just look what happened when the Meyer paper was published.

    Also thorton evos always try to support their position by any and every means, even if it means keeping any and all alternatives out of publication.

    They ALWAYS attack the person and leave the data alone. Why is that?

    If you guys could actually support your position you wouldn’t need to worry about guys like Buggs.

    All you would have to do is point to the peer-reviewed articles that refute him.

    So where are they?

  39. What do [b]you[/b] know about evolutionary biology and genetics?

    Only what has been written.

    For example I know there isn’t any genetic data which links to the physiological and anatomical differences observed.

    IOW I know that the theory is not objectively testable.

  40. Joseph,

    Normally I don’t respond to your comments, because experience has taught me that it is unproductive to do so. Too much effort for too little return.

    I’ll make an exception in this case because it is so easy to demonstrate the absurdity of your (and Buggs’s) position.

    You wrote:

    To wit- a second copy, if it is not matched, should be counted as a mismatch.

    ANYTHING that doesn’t match is a mismatch- duh.

    Consider a diploid wheat plant with genome A and a tetraploid variant with exactly the same genome repeated twice: AA. According to you and Buggs, their genetic similarity is only 50%, because the tetraploid variant’s second A counts as a mismatch. (In reality the number would be even less than 50%, because the genomes would be A and BB, where A and B are similar but not identical).

    So by your logic, a human is genetically more similar to a chimpanzee than two varieties of wheat are to each other.

    Is that the conclusion you were hoping to reach?

  41. Joseph, just curious: in your view, does a large degree of genetic similarity provide evidence for relatedness?

    If so, would counting a doubling as a mismatch provide evidence against relatedness?

    Or, on the other hand, is all this talk about sequence similarity just trivial, since no amount of genetic similarity means anything about relatedness?

    I’m just trying to clarify where you’re coming from here. Try not to call a fool while you answer.

  42. Joseph wrote:

    Hey rib,

    I just read your comment over on ATBC. It is a lie.

    What comment??

    But I do take you for a fool.

    Clive, what was that you were saying earlier in the thread?


    Do not be rude, snide, or have any condescending demeanor, or I will ban you.

    Note: I am not recommending that Joseph be banned. I am suggesting that there should be one standard of behavior on this site, not two.

  43. Rib is right. Watch the insults.

  44. If Dr. Buggs wanted to make a serious scientific critique, why do you think he published his ideas in a handout to a Christian church instead of a professional scientific journal? And please don’t insult the intelligence of the board be claiming fear of The Evil Evo Conspiracy stopped him.

    I’m sorry if you find it insulting but that is exactly the fear of Dr. Buggs. He’s genuinely afraid that that ANY type of implied connection to the ID community would FURTHER (no, I’m not going to explain) hurt him personally ala Expelled. This is despite him making it very clear that his rough estimates do not constitute “a death-blow to evolution”.

    For heaven’s sake, I do not even personally know the guy (nor had I heard of him until Joseph brought him up) and he’s afraid Darwinists are going to make his life miserable just because we exchanged a couple emails! Do you honestly believe that I should discount Dr. Buggs as making this stuff up?

    And Dr. Buggs is not alone. I know of many people who share this same fear. They keep their beliefs secret in fear of losing their jobs, despite the fact that these beliefs do not affect the quality of their work.

    BTW, I don’t discriminate on this issue. If a Darwinist suffers the same fate I’d protest as well.

  45. Patrick, if true, that still would not explain why he didn’t try to publish in a scientific journal. As I have pointed out, revisions to earlier measures were published in the research literature, so it’s not as though it’s going to hurt him.

    He’s an untenured (assistant) professor. If he’s got something to say scientifically, publishing it in the research literature can only help, even if it’s refuted.

  46. that still would not explain why he didn’t try to publish in a scientific journal.

    You answered your own question:

    He’s an untenured (assistant) professor.

  47. Yes, he’s untenured: which is why he should publish in the scientific literature and not push his views of science in religious newspapers or church groups where they almost to be taken as creationist. His decisions are hard to understand.

  48. From my experience doing as you say is a quick way to become a target as well, especially if you lack the job security of being tenured. Which is very unfortunate. Although I’d agree that he set himself up with his prior actions. The problem is that what he probably thought of as an innocent move on his part is jumped upon as travesty by Darwinists. The problem is not with him, it’s with the Darwinists and their hostile mindset.

    Hell, I’ve been insulted before just because I quoted something in a book and did not provide a reference (or something along those lines…I forget exactly). When I explained that I had already taken the book back to the library since it was late I was called a liar. Seriously, how can anyone deal with such unreasonable people? Even little realities of life are turned into horrible acts. Quite frankly they make me sick.

    In any case, what makes Dr. Buggs afraid is the thought that someone will misinterpret what’s going on as Buggs being an active part of the Uncommon Descent ID community. Let me be very clear: he’s not. Because we commented on his prior article he communicated with us a little, but that is all. In fact, he’s made some statements that some of us might disagree with. I want to make this very clear just in case a co-worker of Dr. Buggs reads this conversation. I do not want a miscommunication to cause them to become angry with Dr. Buggs.

  49. Consider a diploid wheat plant with genome A and a tetraploid variant with exactly the same genome repeated twice: AA.

    Consider a human baby. It has two sets of 23 chromosomes. The same number as its father and mother.

    By your reckoning the baby has 100% of its mother’s AND 100% of its father’s.

    Yet we know it only has 50% from each.

    And BTW, we know that plants do NOT behave the same as metazoans.

    Both myself and Dr Buggs know this and would take that into account.

    IOW your example is just a staw-man.

  50. Joseph, just curious: in your view, does a large degree of genetic similarity provide evidence for relatedness?

    Within a population, yes.

    However genetic similarities can also be explained by a common design and convergence.

    What is needed is a map that links the DNA to the anatomy and physiology.

    As I said before to date the only evidence for the evolution of the eye/ vision system is the SAME today as it was in Darwin’s day- that is we have observed varying degrees in complexity of eyes/ vision systems and we “know” the first population(s) didn’t have one.

    And that is pathetic.

  51. Joseph wrote:

    Consider a human baby. It has two sets of 23 chromosomes. The same number as its father and mother.

    By your reckoning the baby has 100% of its mother’s AND 100% of its father’s.

    No. You’re assuming that each of the parents possesses two identical copies of every chromosome.

    They don’t. Google “homozygous” and “heterozygous”.

    Let it go, Joseph.

  52. So Joseph [51], does this mean that you think humans, bonobos, common chimps, gibbons, gorillas, and orangutans are all designed separately?

    That’s an active designer.

  53. Upon further reflection:

    Consider a diploid wheat plant with genome A and a tetraploid variant with exactly the same genome repeated twice: AA.

    I would say there is a 50% genetic difference. That is with the following caveat- that 50% can be made up in one step.

    Just as the 2nd gene can also be made in one step. The % genetic difference is the same, however don’t confuse or conflate that difference with the number of steps.

    Insertions and deletions are also considered one time events.

    IOW the % difference needs to be qualified. And I believe Dr Buggs did that.

    Next rib claims:

    You’re assuming that each of the parents possesses two identical copies of every chromosome.

    Not since the early 60s when I was too young to know what a chromosome is.

  54. So Joseph [51], does this mean that you think humans, bonobos, common chimps, gibbons, gorillas, and orangutans are all designed separately?

    That is a possibility. And one I wouldn’t rule out- at least without knowing what makes each what it is.

    That’s an active designer.

    Or designers. And not very active if it is all based on a common genetic theme.

    Then there would be pre-implementation activity as well as the implementation. And the implementation could be as easy as letting all the pre-implementation processes go to work.

    1- write the program(s)

    2- allocate resources

    3- go

  55. Enough with the idle chit-chat

    Can either one of you, RoyK or ribczynski, point to the scientific data which links the physiological and anatomical differences observed between chimps and humans to the genetic differences observed?

    If not then why do you accept the premise?

  56. Talk us mechanistically through step 3, if you can, Joe.

  57. Joseph [56], the relations between genes and physiology are being worked out in simpler organisms (like C. elegans).

    There’s no reason to think that all the differences between chimps and humans will boil down simply to genetic differences. But that doesn’t have any bearing on whether (a) humans and chimps are related, or (b) gene similarity tells a lot about how closely they’re related.

  58. There’s no reason to think that all the differences between chimps and humans will boil down simply to genetic differences.

    Yes there is:

    “Yet by the late 1980s it was becoming obvious to most genetic researchers, including myself, since my own main research interest in the ‘80s and ‘90s was human genetics, that the heroic effort to find the information specifying life’s order in the genes had failed. There was no longer the slightest justification for believing that there exists anything in the genome remotely resembling a program capable of specifying in detail all the complex order of the phenotype. The emerging picture made it increasingly difficult to see genes in Weismann’s “unambiguous bearers of information” or to view them as the sole source of the durability and stability of organic form. It is true that genes influence every aspect of development, but influencing something is not the same as determining it. Only a very small fraction of all known genes, such as developmental fate switching genes, can be imputed to have any sort of directing or controlling influence on form generation. From being “isolated directors” of a one-way game of life, genes are now considered to be interactive players in a dynamic two-way dance of almost unfathomable complexity, as described by Keller in The Century of The Gene.”
    Michael John Denton page 172 of Uncommon Dissent

  59. Talk us mechanistically through step 3, if you can, Joe.

    It went as designed with a few hiccups.

  60. But that doesn’t have any bearing on whether (a) humans and chimps are related, or

    It has a bearing on how they are related.

    (b) gene similarity tells a lot about how closely they’re related.

    Gene similarity works within a population.

    Outside of that you need the data I asked for. Because without that all you have is speculation based on the assumption.

    1- get the data I asked for

    2- determine whether or not it is due to culled genetic accidents or design

  61. Hi Joseph,
    There have been quite alot discovered regarding genes that regulate brain size. Is that the sort of thing you are after?

    the scientific data which links the physiological and anatomical differences observed between chimps and humans to the genetic differences observed?

  62. Joseph @61,

    2- determine whether or not it is due to culled genetic accidents or design

    How will you be making that determination? Will you be using publicly available gene sequences so we can all follow along?

    This is fascinating stuff indeed!

    I look forward to the demonstation!

  63. Joseph:

    “Hey rib,

    I just read your comment over on ATBC. It is a lie……”

    I’m deleting your comment. It’s obvious why. This is not acceptable. Keep the personal attacks out of discussion.

  64. Joseph [58]: wha? I said the physiological differences won’t boil down to genes alone. You disagreed, but from the content of your link I think you mean something else. Do you think they do boil down to genes alone? I said they don’t, and Denton, who you quote, distinguishes between influencing and determining — so he seems to agree with me (about this at least, if little else).

  65. Joseph:

    “ANYTHING that doesn’t match is a mismatch- duh.”

    “That is a stupid inference.”

    Keep it civil or I will be forced to delete these comments and may have to ban you.

    The point in this policy is that harsh words and disrepect will only bring about more of the same. It clouds the argument. For goodness sakes, be respectful, no matter how vehemently you disagree with someone. If you’re conversant in the topic then this is not necessary.

  66. Hi,
    I’ve just been reading at that ATBC place, it seems that ribczynski has been placed under moderation (does that mean he can no longer post or posts are delayed or something else?)

    Is this true Clive? Why? I was enjoying his arguments and rebuttals, as apparently so has Barry with his recent post

    Below the fold I have reproduced an interesting comment thread in which ribczynski attacks ID proponents’ criticisms of macroevolution through NDE, and two ID proponents convincingly refute the Darwinist line.

    Thanks for the info about ATBC, it’s always good to see both sides of the story and there’s some very funny pictures in some of the threads! I’ve already sent some of the best to everybody I know!

  67. Clive – We’re on opposite sides but I applaud your tone. Maybe we’ll find the truth between us!

  68. IDskeptic,

    I hope we will. That seems to be the point, after all.

    PhilipBaxter,

    I don’t think ribczynski has been put under moderation.

  69. Just wanted to offer my two cents…
    1 – I believe that, while Richard Buggs is a Brit he is actually funded by the University of Florida, so it isn’t the “UK government funded trolls” that need to be kept at bay.

    2 – Having looked through Dr Buggs’ publications, any research group would be insane to threaten him. He is publishing in some top journals (which is particularly impressive for a young researcher). While I am sceptical of ID, if anybody tries to “threaten him” then I’ll be on his side!

    3 – Panda’s Thumb has an article linking to some old discussions on the issue: http://pandasthumb.org/archive.....th-di.html. Just thought people might be interested…

    4 – I don’t have time to engage anybody in a debate like those raging on here, but briefly in response to Joseph [#55]:

    “point to the scientific data which links the physiological and anatomical differences observed between chimps and humans to the genetic differences observed?”

    A – The loss of MYH16 explains the reduced masticatory muscles in humans relative to chimpanzees (Stedman et al., 2004).
    B – Deactivation of KRTHAP1 likely had substantial impacts on the thinning of body hair in humans relative to chimpanzees (Winter et al., 2001).

    Stedman, H.H. et al. Nature 428 (6981): 415–418
    Winter, H. et al. Hum Genet 108 (1): 37–42.

  70. What’s going on? Why are posts missing?

  71. Hi, guys!

    Just checking to see if my comment will go through. :-)

  72. Welcome back rib!

  73. Thanks, Philip!

    But I’m not back, at least not yet. My comment got held in moderation.

    Moderators,

    Could you please remove me from moderation? And if not, could you publicly state why I am under moderation?

    (If I have already been liberated, thank you. I won’t know until I hit ‘Submit Comment’.)

  74. My last comment was held in moderation. I’m hoping this one will go through unimpeded.

    Joseph,

    I can’t make sense of your comment #53, so let me ask a couple of direct questions.

    1. In comment #40, I wrote:

    Consider a diploid wheat plant with genome A and a tetraploid variant with exactly the same genome repeated twice: AA. According to you and Buggs, their genetic similarity is only 50%, because the tetraploid variant’s second A counts as a mismatch. (In reality the number would be even less than 50%, because the genomes would be A and BB, where A and B are similar but not identical).

    So by your logic, a human is genetically more similar to a chimpanzee than two varieties of wheat are to each other.

    Is that the conclusion you were hoping to reach?

    Do you see why Buggs’ method, which you are defending, leads to this absurd conclusion?

    2. You wrote:

    Consider a human baby. It has two sets of 23 chromosomes. The same number as its father and mother.

    By your reckoning the baby has 100% of its mother’s AND 100% of its father’s.

    I replied:

    No. You’re assuming that each of the parents possesses two identical copies of every chromosome.

    They don’t. Google “homozygous” and “heterozygous”.

    You responded rather cryptically:

    Not since the early 60s when I was too young to know what a chromosome is.

    Do you understand (and acknowledge) that “my reckoning” does not lead to the conclusion that the baby has 100% of the mother’s genome and 100% of the father’s?

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