Home » The Design of Life » We have the hat, but where’s that rabbit? High levels of information in “simple” life forms

We have the hat, but where’s that rabbit? High levels of information in “simple” life forms

In Tuesday night, a guest speaker spoke to my adult night school class in why there is an intelligent design controversy. He talked about the central problem of evolution: The fact that high levels of information are present in life forms that are supposed to be early and simple.

Some guests attended the talk, and one of them announced that if intelligent design is correct, scientists would not see the need to do any research because Goddunit. Or something like that.

The more I thought about what he was saying, the more it puzzled me. Finally, I realized:

For the materialist, the PURPOSE of science is to show that high levels of information can be created without intelligence.

Therefore, in looking for causes of events, the materialist accepts ONLY a solution that shows that high levels of information can come from random assembly (= without intelligence).

He has not shown that high levels of information can be created without intelligence. He assumes that his assertion is true and looks for evidence to support it.

Discoveries that disconfirm his initial belief are not treated as evidence.

Keep looking, he says, keep looking … that magic information mill has GOT to be somewhere!

What if random assembly is not in fact the answer? Then either

1. No solution is found (because there never was any solution in the direction in which he is looking)


2. An inadequate solution is patched together and defended as the best available solution – usually that means that claims for the solution are overstated wildly to the public.

But it is the materialist scientist’s duty to keep looking for the magic mill even if the fact that random assembly did not occur is overwhelmingly obvious.

And he displays his virtue to his peers by never questioning the system and by showing hostility and contempt for anyone who does question it.

Given his initial convictions, the materialist cannot believe that a non-materialist is actually doing science. He cannot envision any approach to the fact base that does not have as its base an effort to show that the information was created randomly.

As a matter of fact, the fact base could easily be approached otherwise, and often more fruitfully, too. If we assume that an object in nature is designed, we do not waste time trying to imagine how it could have come about randomly. We study its characteristics and make predictions about its behaviour, function, and so forth.

But that doesn’t help prop up materialism – which seems to be the big project nowadays.

To see why materialism is on a slow train to nowhere, go here. These heroes of materialist evolution theories  are at least as sharp as a marshmallow and twice as swift too.

Also, at The Mindful Hack and Post-Darwinist and elsewhere:

Antony Flew: Is he too old Also, New York Times spin: Elderly ex-atheist is just senile.

Intelligence: How much is heredity and how much environment? – the Flynn effect

Books at home predict student success better than parents’ education

US anti-religion group loses standing to fight lawsuits

Faking out brain injury tests – yes, it can be done

AIDS numbers downsized: a learning experience

Pudging the Truth

Grandma was right: Just eat and be thankful

Our weighty obsession – this one should be required reading for teen girls. Eating disorders very often begin with a diet.

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71 Responses to We have the hat, but where’s that rabbit? High levels of information in “simple” life forms

  1. I actually recall a philosopher (alas, I forget who) stating that intelligent design can never really be ruled out when it comes to various scientific questions, OoL included. Reason being that the pivotal step of confirming an OoL process would be to reproduce it in a lab – which means you’d be confirming both the process and the possibility of intelligence guiding it at once.

    I do agree, though, about materialist aims with science.

  2. Tell it, Denyse. They can get away with this since the ID research program is still in it’s infancy. But the materialists will have no way to spin it when new understandings and new treatments and cures come out of the application of the ID paradigm. I for one look forward to that day.

  3. For scientific materialist the materialism comes first; the science comes thereafter. We might therefore more accurately term them “materialists employing science.” ~ Phillip Johnson

    Science is typically defined as objective investigation (discovering and testing facts)–the means for making faster airplanes and better medicines.

    But there’s another definition held implicitly in the scientific establishment, and it is tantamount to the philosophy of materialism or naturalism. This is the idea that science may legitimately employ only natural causes in explaining everything we observe.

    The way this definition of science operates is to outlaw any questioning of naturalistic evolution. Darwinists don’t ask whether life evolved from a sea of chemicals; they only ask how it evolved. They don’t ask whether complex life forms evolved from simpler forms; they only ask how it happened. The presupposition is that natural forces alone must (and therefore can) account for the development of all life on earth; the only task left is to work out the details. ~ Nancy Pearcey

  4. Reason being that the pivotal step of confirming an OoL process would be to reproduce it in a lab – which means you’d be confirming both the process and the possibility of intelligence guiding it at once.

    Very good. Thank you for that. Same with Dawkins’ example of dog breeding as proof of NDE, I suppose.

  5. Bevets, I found this yesterday and find it fitting to that very shallow “only natural causes argument” of materialist

    Declaration of Scientific Principle:

    When in the course of scientific endeavor, it becomes apparent that deeper truths exist, a decent respect to Nature requires that such truths be explored. We hold these truths to be scientifically approachable, that all forms of existence are interconnected, that they possess certain fundamental and unalienable properties. That to describe this interconnectedness and these properties, successive theories shall be constructed by mankind, deriving their explanatory and predictive powers from the approximations of laws of Nature. That whenever any theory becomes inadequate of these ends, it is the duties of mankind to modify it or to abolish it, and to establish new ones, laying the foundation on such principles and organizing the structures in such forms, as to mankind shall seem most likely to reflect their understanding and knowledge of Nature. In memory of Thomas Jefferson (October, 2003)

    off topic: here is a song for all those who are writing a book.


  6. It’s worth keepng in mind, as well, that “only natural causes” means – in the context – only material causes. I don’t mind the idea that science studies only natural causes IF we mean that science does not study miracles, which are segregated from nature by definition.

    But the expression does not typically mean that. It typically means that science is compelled to assume that high levels of information can be created through random movements of molecules. That is the fundamental article of the materialist creed, and it has never been demonstrated.

    Because it has never been – and probably cannot be – demonstrated, the materialist demands that we assert it as an article of faith.

    Submit if you must, but don’t make a virtue of your cowardice.

  7. “if intelligent design is correct, scientists would not see the need to do any research because Goddunit”

    Well now they’re being honest with us. What is most important is not the truth, but their jobs. They would rather protect their status/ paycheck then to entertain the possibility that evolution may be wrong. But this assumption is as false as their belief in evolution. Cosmologist have not been put out of business because of the Big Bang theory. It is impossible to learn everything. They can continue to study biology until the end of time.

  8. Peter, I don’t think it is quite as simple as that.

    The materialists have been trained to think a certain way and do not have the creativity to think in any other way. They are not asking themselves questions like, do I dare to differ? It just wouldn’t occur to them to evaluate independently a simple question like whether materialism is ceasing to provide answers because it has reached the limit of its usefulness or whether a reasonable person – faced with the current apparent design of life – should propose materialist hypotheses today.

    I suspect that, in most jobs in science, creativity is not rewarded but deference to the status quo is.

    When easy rewards come from barking in unison, a person must have had an unusual experience if he is going to stop barking and start thinking.

    Also, where a political party or movement that the scientist supports has taken on “the cause”, it all feels so GOOD.

    No, it still doesn’t work, but it feels good. And the headache doesn’t happen until sobriety sets in.

    Then, I suppose, one looks for scapegoats or something. (Hint: The Christian fundies are a good bet because unlike the Muslim fundies, they won’t blow up the train station and blame the materialists for causing them to do it.)

  9. Denyse,

    Wow: according to this last bit, “materialists” have been brainwashed (“trained to think a certain way”), are uncreative, unquestioning, not independent, are like dogs (“barking in unison”), rely simply on feelings (“it all feels so GOOD”), are analogous to drunkards (“the headache doesn’t happen until sobriety sets in”), and are prone to scapegoating — and even then choose the wrong targets.

    To follow this (addiing “I suspect” and “I suppose” in lieu of evidence), that would make non-materialists independent thinkers, creative, questioning, indivdiualists, reliant on thought, sober, and not prone to scapegoating.

    Goodness gracious, Denyse! Try using a broader brush next time: you’re not generalizing enough.

  10. Turnabout is fair play, GAW.

  11. 11

    Just delurking for a moment here–it seems to me that GAW has a good point; O’Leary’s post and subsequent comments are almost comically overgeneralized, and not worthy of a site run by Dr. Dembski. Angryoldfatman, we should lead by example, I think. Justifying juvenile accusations by saying “They did it first!” is, well, juvenile. Those of us who are interested in seeing ID as science gain traction need to hold ourselves to a higher standard.

  12. These guys are sure pushing the envelope of what is considered natural.

    “We found that applying magnetic pulses to the
    brain when an anesthetic was placed in between caused the brain to feel the
    effect of said anesthetic as if the test subject had actually inhaled the same.
    We further found that drinking water exposed to magnetic pulses, laser light
    or microwave when an anesthetic was placed in between also causes brain
    effects in various degrees. Through additional experiments, we verified that
    the said brain effect was indeed the consequence of quantum entanglement.
    These results defy common belief that quantum entanglement alone cannot
    be used to transmit information and support the possibility of a quantum


    I can’t find in their papers if they actually tested for the specific molecules in the or of the subjects. (Surely they must of wouldn’t you think?)

    Either way, if it is just a placebo effect in the brain, or if it is actual molecules being formed in the brain/body, it is profoundly breakthrough science, and will surely ruffle plenty of materialistic feathers on what is allowed to be considered natural and what is not.

  13. getawitness,

    Nearly all experiments in evolutionary biology are based on the Darwinian model. That sounds a little bit like barking in unison. It is also a model that has no empirical underpinning. I actually do not rule out creativity from the biologists because in the course of writing their reports they can get very creative in explaining their contradictory findings.

    Maybe you could enlighten us as to why all this effort and money is being expended on a paradigm that has no empirical support except for the trivial unless there is some type of external pressure that is requiring this lock step behavior.

    Sounds sort of like Stalin’s purge of the geneticists to get a political solution that is acceptable.

  14. Denyse,

    But you are not really answering his question. To make progress ID has to answer its critics. If ID is correct how does one do science? Of course the answer is simple for most people and has been around for a long time. This indicates to me that the critic was really masking a religious insecurity. Scientist have been investigating the design of the world since long before evolution story telling began.

    I really would have liked to been there but I’m only at St Mike’s on Thursdays. :-|

  15. 15

    You’re absolutely right, Denyse! Whether they realize it or not, mainstream scientists are under some sort of satanic influence. They may be well meaning people, but they don’t realize that ultimately their “methodological naturalism” is just a tool to DENY GOD. In fact, I believe all the supposedly good things that have come out of science in last couple of centuries are just side effects and not the main purpose of Science. Just think if we could bring back the study of Design and God back into science(I’m going to be frank here: I don’t believe aliens are the designers); I think we would see a lot more progress. Darwinian thinking has permeated many areas of science. Neuroscience has pretty much done away with the soul, and insists that our minds are really just a function of our biological brains i.e. they have no REAL intelligence. Researchers at pharmaceutical companies just sit around waiting for cures to randomly appear in test tubes, because of what they were taught about the universe. If Intelligent Design were the dominant paradigm, just imagine how many dollars would be saved by a more efficient drug design methodology based on Design principles. I think cosmologists are slowly coming around to understanding that things are designed (see the Anthropic principle), but I think they are being held back by their Darwinian upbringing. It won’t be long before people begin to realize that ID is a superior theory to mindless Darwinism. Darwin may have said that God is dead, but we all know Darwin is dead and that his pet theory is dying a slow death.

  16. Peter: “If ID is correct how does one do science?”

    One answer to that is, researchers, who would otherwise be at a investigatory dead end, could be about the business of exploiting the structures that they find, to the end of bettering our world.

  17. Jerry,

    Contradictory findings do not bark in unison. As for

    Nearly all experiments in evolutionary biology are based on the Darwinian model.

    That’s because they are in, uh, evolutionary biology.

    But hey, thanks for bringing Stalin in: that satisfies my call for more broad-brush thinking. Next time, be sure to mention that every bad person since 1859 was inspired by Darwin.

  18. getawitness,

    “That’s because they are in, uh, evolutionary biology.”

    Uh, do you understand anything about science in general or evolutionary biology in particular. Your comment indicates you don’t. So maybe you should recuse yourself from discussions that involve science and observe and ask questions. Just to let you understand what is at stake; no area of science should use a paradigm with out empirical backing?

    I brought in Stalin because there is lots of evidence of purges going on in biology though they are not eliminated the same way that Stalin did the elimination. I find the comparison appropriate. Those who disagree are eliminated or silenced. Let me know why that is not an appropriate comparison.

    “Next time, be sure to mention that every bad person since 1859 was inspired by Darwin.”

    Nice juvenile comment. As I said maybe you should recuse yourself from science discussions.

  19. Jerry,

    We clearly disagree about whether evolutionary biology has empirical support. I think it does. That doesn’t make me ignorant of biology, unless most biologists are also ignorant of biology. Of course there are disagreements about the details of evolutionary change, but that’s all for the good.

    Your mention of Stalin was hyperbolic, pure and simple.

  20. getawitness: “That’s because they are in, uh, evolutionary biology.”

    One can accept an evolutionary model without accepting darwinism, the blind watchmaker hypothesis, etc.

  21. One solution to what O’Leary observes is akin to a mathematical uniqueness proof. Life appears designed. Those looking for an evolutionary pathway that explains the “apparent” design will continue to search unless it is ruled out as impossible. To some, it is not sufficient for ID to satisfy Occam’s razor–the most likely explanation–it needs to be the only explanation.

    An interesting approach would be to prove that information is something other than matter or energy (as N. Weiner asserts). Different arrangements of matter and energy do not create information, but they can be the repository for information. A successful origin of life theory needs to account for the origin of information.

  22. getawitness,

    I provided a theistic evolutionist about what ID believes. One thing that I believe that is common with nearly everyone that supports ID is that they believe thate there is no evidence for the Darwinian paradigm except for trivial examples. We have yet to find anyone including evolutionary biologists to provide any empirical support for neo Darwinism beyond the tivial or to counter claims made by people like Michael Behe in his two books that are not nit picking or specious.

    Since you say you believe that there is empirical support, then you should help us in this debate and provide the evidence. That way we can learn or maybe you can learn that what is supposed to be empirical support is really weak or not even appropriate. Allan MacNeill, an evolutionary biologist who is at the forefront of the discipline, admitted here just a couple weeks ago that there were models but not empirical evidence for macro-evolution.

    If you decide to provide support for neo Darwinism, we will be quite civil and it should be interesting to see where it leads.

  23. jerry, I’m trying to find where Alan MacNeill said that and I’m having a hard time locating the exact comment. He’s said a number of things, not all of which I agree with. Could you provide a link?

    Two things for the record: First, I’m not a scientist: I read some of the primary literature but get it mostly secondhand, much like most readers of, say, The Edge of Evolution. So I’m not going to get into a citation fight. Second, I don’t take a position on abiogenesis. Not that you asked, but I thought I’d get that out of the way.

    My view of the rest of evolution is kind of eclectic: I think a number of mechanisms have operated, some simultaneously, some preferred at different times and under different conditions. These would include classic neo-Darwinism, evo-devo, lots of symbiotic processes in early bacterial evolution (see Lynn Margulis), etc. I think punctuated equilibrium seems like a pretty good way of understanding the timescales of evolutionary change (assuming of course that the consensus view of the earth’s age is accurate). I also have a developmental systems view of evolution in its totality that does not easily separate the organism from its environment: this accords with the views of people like Margulis (mentioned above), Susan Oyama and Humberto Maturana/ Francisco Varela.

    It is of course an assumption that evolution works natural mechanisms. But why should I abandon that assumption? It’s also an assumption that the continents got to their present configuration on their own via naturalistic mechanisms. Now, there are lots of debates about the specific mechanisms of plate movement: the role of mantle plumes, the configuration of the boundary between the lower and upper mantle, etc. etc. Nobody knows exactly how we got from Pangea to now. But I don’t think that’s a reason to abandon the naturalistic premise.

  24. Hi Peter:

    Re 13: If ID is correct how does one do science?

    Perhaps, the way the founders of modern science and many of its sub-disciplines by and large did it?

    GEM of TKI

  25. I brought in Stalin because there is lots of evidence of purges going on in biology though they are not eliminated the same way that Stalin did the elimination.

    Can you give us this “lots of evidence of purges”. I don’t see it.

    I’ll take Sternberg as read. You imply that there is a lot of purging going on, so I expect you have evidence for multiple events.


  26. getawitness,

    You stated a lot of proposed mechanisms for evolution, none of which have been proven in the lab. Whereas ID/Genetic Entropy has a proven mechanism for “information implementation” from a higher realm/dimension with breakthroughs in quantum non-locality.
    As well, Why should the foundational principle of Genetic Entropy be discarded when upon critical analysis of evidence all biological adaptations conform to it, as well, Genetic Entropy lines up with two of the foundational tenets of science; the second law of thermodynamics; and the law of conservation of information.

    Even the trivial gains in complexity for HIV (the ONLY gains in complexity ever completely proven to the molecular level in favor of evolution, by the way) came at a cost of complexity for the higher organism (us) it attacked. Thus even in this “hard proof” for evolution we find an overall loss in complexity for life that does not violate the foundational principle of Genetic Entropy.

    No getawitness, evolution is a theory in search of ANY EVIDENCE WHATSOEVER and by all rights should be banished to the dust bin of history!

  27. Bob O’H,

    Maybe we should develop a laundry list here of the “purges”, but in addition to Sternberg we could start with Dembski himself, Marks who hasn’t been sacked but his research restricted, Gonzalez from Iowa State where some people voting on tenure openly admitted his support for ID was a factor. Have you looked at what the Lehigh biology department has publicly said about Behe. Do you think with that announcement that Behe would be able to get tenure today? Others may be able to cite other examples.

    When I use the term purge, I obviously am not speaking of Stalin like methods but agree with getawitness it is a little bit of hyperbole but it was to make a point especially about the lock step behavior for a paradigm with no empirical support. Now that does sound like Stalin.

    Bob, I suggest an experiment. Start defending ID in faculty meetings if you are in academia or in conferences and in reports not necessarily as a pro ID person yourself but only just as one who says they must be heard because they raise some interesting questions and should be considered in discussions of evolutionary biology. After all if there is a God or if we believe in SETI maybe one of these intelligences may have done something.

    What do you think your survival prospects will be?

  28. I believe there may be a little known movie coming out about this alleged, and much denied, “purging” of ID friendly scholars in February:


  29. jerry,

    You make an interesting point, and one I’m broadly sympathetic with. I do agree that the academic tenure process (for example) may cause some people to play things close to the vest during their early years, which is exactly when they should be most innovative and bold. A few years ago, George Will proposed that tenure might be reversed: given to researchers in their first decade or so, when they most need protection, and then slowly taken away later as results are demanded. I’ve never been sure what to make of that proposal, but it’s an interesting thought experiment at least.

  30. getawitness,

    You list a lot of potential mechanisms or explanations for justifying a naturalistic view of evolution. We can take each one in isolation to see if it really addresses the main issues under debate.

    We have done this many times and it gets repeated as new persons come to the site and are not aware of what came before them.

    For example, punctuated equilibrium is not a mechanism of biological change. It just says that something happened very quickly and assumed it was by naturalistic means. It will go into a lot of explanations such as geographic isolation, founder effects etc but offers no evidence to support it other than some speculative models.

    Punctuated equilibrium was developed to ostensibly cover up the embarrassing fact that there were no transitions to support the naturalistic paradigm. It is a model, and nothing more. it does not based on any empirical evidence except the lack of fossil evidence nor is there much support for the elements of this model other than for trivial results.

    I don’t want to get in to a long discussion of punctuated equilibrium but use it as a quick example of something that has little or no empirical backing of any consequence but which is accepted as fact by many. It is typical of the entire discipline of evolutionary biology.

    I will get you the thread for the MacNeill quote. It was just a few weeks ago before the debate of Provine and Nelson which I understand from an observer was a low key event with neither side addressing the other directly very much.

  31. jerry and pretty much every long time commentator on UD are very familiar with everything in the TO FAQ.

  32. jerry, here is the quote you were looking for:

    Do the currently identified mechanisms of genetic and phenotypic variation produce enough variation to get from there to here or not?
    As for macroevolution, I agree that at the present time we have little or no formal theory predicting the observed patterns of change in deep evolutionary time. This is one reason why I have asserted that the so-called “modern evolutionary synthesis” of the mid-20th century is “dead” – it’s theoretical predictions have either been superceded (e.g. by evo-devo) or shown to be inadequate.

    However, this only means that we do not currently have a comprehensive theoretical understanding of how macroevolution has occurred. What we do have is an immense and exponentially expanding body of evidence strongly supporting the inference that macroevolution has indeed happened.

    Yes, MacNeill is positive that with further research that Darwinism, whatever form it’ll eventually take, will be vindicated. Many ID proponents would agree with the quoted statement entirely, but would also say we need to be looking for designed mechanisms (such as front-loading) along with Darwinian mechanisms.

    What we do have is an immense and exponentially expanding body of evidence strongly supporting the inference that macroevolution has indeed happened. This is the inference that both Michael Behe and William Dembski (and my friend and colleague, Hannah Maxson) have agreed with on numerous occasions. the argument is not about whether, but rather about how.

    One approach to answering the question of how has macroevolution occurred is to analyze the previously mentioned mountain of empirical evidence with respect to any patterns that it might yield.
    Therefore (and as we concluded last summer), the only real areas of dispute between evolutionary biologists and the major theorists and supporters of intelligent design is the origin of life from non-living material (“abiogenesis”) and the origin of a small number of complex biochemical mechanisms and pathways (including the bacterial flagellum, selected components of the vertebrate immune system, and the mammalian blood clotting cascade, to which Behe has now added the evolution of chloroquine resistance in Plasmodium falciparum).

    Despite agreeing about universal common descent, I doubt Behe would agree with MacNeill’s overall characterization of the situation. Flagellum and P. falciparum are just highlights, not the only objects under dispute as MacNeill asserts. One of the focuses for ID proponents has always been–even 10+ years ago–to find whether there is positive evidence for Darwinian mechanisms being capable of macroevolution to the extent that everything we see since the OOL was created without any directed design involved. That is nowhere near a “small” disagreement. That’s a gaping hole in evolutionary biology that MacNeill is attempting to fill in with his list of purported mechanisms for modern evolutionary biology–none of which he has major positive evidence for. Scientists are just seeking one example. Every time a Darwinist claims there is an example, it’s either a trivial example ID proponents would not disagree with in the first place (Smith’s HIV) or they’re playing connect-the-dots by comparing various creatures and presuming the mechanism works…which is the point under contention in the first place! Yet most Darwinists will never admit that examples have never been observed but are instead inferred to be real. Oh, I should also note that these proposed mechanisms are very likely of being capable of inducing limited variation. The real question is whether a combination of them are capable producing biology as we know it without any intelligent mechanisms being involved. But despite these disagreements, I personally am very thankful to him for declaring that Neo-Darwinism is largely dead and a new “modern synthesis” must be formed. The debate has been centered around old ideas in evolutionary biology for far too long.

  33. Denyse:

    I believe that making a distinction between “only natural causes” and “only material causes,” as you do in post 6, goes a long way in helping to define the differences in approach toward science between ID-oriented scientists and orthodox scientists.

    The orthodox restrict science to “only material causes,” and require materialistic explanations — no matter how fanciful (and becoming ever the more so, as if for our what? our entertainment?) — for any and all natural effects.

    ID adherents restrict science to “only natural causes,” but have the temerity to point out that there are natural effects that cannot be scientifically explained by purely materialistic causes, introducing — horror of horrors — the scientific possibility (nay, the scientific likelihood) of supernatural causes for some (but by no means all) natural effects; causes that, by definition, are beyond the ken of science to know.

    The “throw up your hands and say God did it” argument against ID is a canard. In fact, I don’t see, in day-to-day science, how the two approaches make much practical difference.

    It’s on the “edge of evolution” where the orthodox are loathe (with Eve, see Genesis 3:5) to give up the deceit that “ye shall be as gods.”

    Meanwhile ID adherents, already recognizing that there must be a power (or powers) greater than themselves, are not uncomfortable allowing — in both their personal lives as human beings and their professional lives as scientists — that there may be valid epistemologies that originate in spiritual realm, and that can be known only via non-scientific principles such as faith.

  34. Patrick,

    Thank you for finding the quote. I was just able to find it and it was on a discussion starting November 9th titled

    “Future Risk Assessment in the Genome”

    In it Dr. MacNeill responded to a comment laying out the complexities of macro-evolution that there seemed to be no answer for.

  35. ellazimm,

    Why don’t you pick out what you think are the strongest arguments in the TO faqs for macro evolution and we can debate a couple if people here are willing.

    See what happens.

  36. Ah, Jerry, so your examples of purges are:
    1. Dembski – a mathematician and theologian. And not a biologist.
    2. Marks – a computer scientist, who as you admit hasn’t been sacked. Also not a biologist.
    3. Gonzalez – an astronomer. i.e. not a biologist.
    4. Behe – at last, a biologist! Who still has his job, just like Sternberg.

  37. I second Jerry, ellazimm, since you seem so confident and sincere, pick out a couple of what you consider your strongest proofs, bring them over, and then watch them melt into nothing under the light of investigation.

  38. BA77,

    I didn’t think ID had a mechanism.
    I’m also unconvinced that the “law of conservation of information” is a “foundational tenet of science” — at least it hasn’t been recognized as such outside a very small circle of scientists. Your references to genetic entropy as foundational (I assume you’re talking about the work of Sanford) are kind of idiosyncratic. As I mentioned a few days ago, I’ve ordered the Sanford book from interlibrary loan and will read it.

    jerry [30], if you look carefully, you’ll see I didn’t identify PE as a mechanism but rather as a good understanding of the timescale of evolutionary change. I do think there are a number of transitional models (despite critiques, for example, I think we have a pretty good undertanding of whale evolution), so I disagree with your contention that “there were no transitions to support the naturalistic paradigm.” If PE was proposed for that reason, wouldn’t it have been accepted quickly? But in fact it was fought tooth and nail by many, many others in the evolutionary biology community.

    Here’s an pattern I’ve been noticing: when evolutionary biologists disagree, ID folks say that means Darwinism/ naturalism/ evolution etc. is dead (or dying, whatever). When evolutionary biologists agree, ID folks say that means they operate in lockstep, are brainwashed, etc. So both agreement and disagreement become de facto evidence for the ID position. Dissents from neo-Darwinism by (for example) evo-devo are signs of the poverty of evolutionary theory. Yet evolutionary theory is impoverished because it won’t entertain dissent!

  39. I didn’t think ID had a mechanism.

    Previously discussed here:


    Personally I’m not sure why the lack of a specified mechanism is such a hangup. After all, Darwinists are arguing amongst themselves what the primary mechanism for creating complex genomes might be. Does the CORE of ID theory need to be tied to mechanisms considering ID-compatible hypotheses provide mechanisms

    You are asking for a mechanism for design. Let me be clear that the core of ID theory is not mechanical in nature. There are ID-compatible hypotheses that offer mechanisms for design in biology. Two examples are front-loading and punctuated intervention, which are both compatible with universal common descent. Of course, even in a YEC scenario there can still be partial front-loading and other intelligent mechanisms which can account for rapid evolution. While front-loading has predictions unfortunately the results of punctuated intervention and unintelligent mechanisms might look much the same. The difference is that intelligent mechanisms need not be gradualistic, which of course is more compatible with the fossil record. But while we know that intelligence is quite capable of producing specified complexity we are still trying to determine the exact limitations of unguided Darwinian mechanisms. We do have experimental evidence (see Behe’s Edge of Evolution) but most Darwinian mechanisms are untested…they’re just assumed to work as advertised.

    Now an intelligent mechanism can self-terminate aka “stop”. Darwinian mechanisms on the other hand have no reason to do so. So, unless unguided, unintelligent Darwinian mechanisms happen to be on vacation they are either not active today at the same level or they were never capable in the first place. It’s always possible we are misunderstanding something about unintelligent mechanisms but so far the outlook is grim for Darwinism. I for one am open to the possibility that intelligence was only involved during OOL and the system was configured in such a fashion to allow unintelligent mechanisms to unfold the rest (like a culmination of lego block pieces). But I do not see any evidence or experiments to validate that scenario.

  40. Bob O’H (#37): “Ah, Jerry, so your examples of purges are:
    1. Dembski – a mathematician and theologian. And not a biologist.
    2. Marks – a computer scientist, who as you admit hasn’t been sacked. Also not a biologist.
    3. Gonzalez – an astronomer. i.e. not a biologist.
    4. Behe – at last, a biologist! Who still has his job, just like Sternberg.”

    An amazingly weak rejoinder to Jerry # 27. A great example of deliberate mischaracterization of the proferred argument. Jerry clearly explained his use of the term “purge” as intense persecution. It would be interesting how you would argue that these individuals weren’t persecuted for expressing their unnacceptable to orthodoxy beliefs. Phony “logic” – yes, there is only one biologist on this list, but how does this logically imply that the reason is that the neoDarwinian theory of all evolution is the truth (as opposed to several other possible reasons)? Deliberate refusal to engage an argument – the thought experiment: try questioning scientistic assumptions of origins in any academic context. What are the likely effects on one’s career?

  41. Excellent response Patrick,

    getawitness: You have got to be kidding me if you think whale evolution happened!

    You guys can’t even come with one incontrovertible mutation, to a living organism, that can withstand scrutiny for being truly beneficial.

    As far as a mechanism, I just noted that quantum non-locality has been advanced to the level of complex biological molecules. This demonstration of “transcendent” information being physically implemented onto a complex biological molecule, provides a very solid demonstration for proof of principle, for the Theistic postulation of ID. Do you deny my assertion? If so, how is the fact that transcendent information is clearly being demonstrated to “dom^in^ate” biological molecules contrary to the Theistic postulation of Information coming from a higher dimension to create CSI in life? It clearly is not contrary to the postulation. It clearly demonstrates that the mechanism for “information implementation” from a higher dimension does indeed exist in nature, IF a Being from a higher dimension chose to use it to implement information at different times in our history!
    Unlike evolution which has no demonstration for information originating by totally natural processes, we (Theistic IDists) have a demonstration of complex information 1. Being transcendent of any physical laws of this universe 2. This complex information actually dom^in^ating biological molecules from this transcendent dimension!

  42. Can someone please explain something for me? Is ID about finding supernatural explanations? I’m getting confused since I hear different answer from different people (and even different posts on this blog).

  43. getawitness,

    There are several levels at which this debate is being played out. The most important one is the educational level. In the schools, textbooks and curriculum there is the message of consensus and that no debate is necessary. The reason ID exists is that a science with little or no empirical backing is portrayed as fact to the high school and college student when in fact there is serious debate that is being hidden from them. Shouldn’t the students be told there is no empirical evidence for any mechanism for macro evolution and what is presented is highly speculative. Any textbook or curriculum that included that would not see the light of day in this country and be branded “creationist” or religion based but it would be a more accurate curriculum.

    Along with this message that there is no debate comes the message that humans are no different than any other animal and are just a different branch on the tree of life which by the way is a mythical tree.

    And then you get the message in the popular press and extolled by people like Dawkins that Darwin’s theory enabled him to be a fulfilled atheist. And I have heard Dawkins praised by instructors both at the high school and college level.

    So at the instructional level and in the popular press the students/people are getting a completely different view of the debate than what is happening at the science level.

    When we harp on another scientist disagreeing with the Darwinian paradigm all we are doing is just emphasizing another example of something the student or average person will never see. The typical person thinks it is a done deal and it is just religious nuts prattling about their bizarre religious beliefs who are questioning Darwin.

    What most people here care about here is that the truth be promulgated at the popular level. And that is certainly not being done.

    So the disagreements are taking place as you would expect in any area of science but many issues are off the table automatically by fiat and this lock step behavior of excluding certain areas of research also appears in what can be allowed in the curriculum and what must appear in the popular press in defense of Darwinism.

    You keep on trying to make the ID people look bad when from what I can see they are being the reasonable people in this debate. Your observations seem mostly forced in one direction and are easily countered. I suggest as an intellectual exercise look at it from the other direction and try to understand the ID positions and then see who is being the most reasonable as opposed to searching for anything to make the ID people look bad.

    I can probably make a better argument for the naturalistic explanation than most of the anti-ID people who come here. I know what most of the reasonable arguments are but I also know their shortcomings.

    As an aside if you want to debate the forrest animal to whale transitions by all means. This appears to be the best the Darwinist can come up with. Each of the species is so far apart that they are only vaguely related to each other and some of the transitions are real stretches. In none of the presentations I have seen is there a discussion of the various complex transitions that would have to take place for an animal to actually become a whale.

  44. BA77,

    We agree on at least one thing: ID leads toward theology. I’ve argued this before, contra DaveScot and Joseph. (As I’ve said before, I’m a Christian though not an IDist or a creationist. If that confuses some people, so be it.)

    I’m thinking about your comment but I must admit a lot of it doesn’t make sense to me. To my ear, a lot of it seems like so much woo. For example, your conclusion:

    Unlike evolution which has no demonstration for information originating by totally natural processes, we (Theistic IDists) have a demonstration of complex information 1. Being transcendent of any physical laws of this universe 2. This complex information actually dom^in^ating biological molecules from this transcendent dimension!

    I’ve seen no demonstration of (1) in science and can’t make head or tail of (2). What are you talking about?

    By the way, I don’t understand your babysitter filter. Can’t you turn it off? And why, if it refuses “model” and “dominate,” does it allow you to refer to “hard” evidence? :-)

  45. Bob O’H,

    Dembski and Marks are dealing with biology. Do you disagree?

    Let me know if you come across an untenured professor suggesting ID like ideas anywhere in biology courses in the US or the EU. There are probably some but I doubt many will survive if they do. Do you disagree with this observation?

    By the way I forgot to mention Dean Kenyon who was once the darling of abiogenesis but then recanted and was restricted on what he could teach in biology because he suggested there was alternative to Darwin. Also I believe Scott Minnich has been restricted on what he can teach and say in his courses. He also teaches biology.

    I am sure there are others and maybe a list will be generated on those actually censored and those who where threatened with sanctions if they deviated.

    But Bob, maybe you could counter this list with all the examples of how ID proponents are allowed to thrive in academia. Also have you heard of the Council of Europe and their enlighten view on ID? Since you have a good understanding of what ID folks believe, are you protesting their “witch hunt” against ID?

    You could inform your colleagues of the injustice and get a petition started that would help set the record straight.

  46. Getawitness:
    Do you know about quantum non-locality? If so for a long time it was limited to transcendent information for sub-atomic particles being communicated faster that the speed of light no matter where in the universe. Now the evidence is extended to complex molecules instead of just sub-atomic particles. Thus providing hard proof for the mechanism postulated by Theism, i.e. that information from a “higher dimension” can “do^min^ate” sub-atomic molecules to the point of assembling complex molecules with proper information input into this dimension. This is because it is now proven to be possible for man himself to mimic this same process by manipulation of non-local information properly!

    proof of principle:

    [QA01.04] Quantum Control of Molecules
    Kent R. Wilson (University of California, San Diego)

    Quantum control of molecules has recently rapidly moved from a theoretical field involving simple dilute gas phase molecules with the participation of only a few quantum states to experiments involving large molecules in the condensed phase at room temperature. These advances flow in part from the use of new techniques such as multiphoton control, the molecular pi pulse, and adaptive learning control (in which the experiment automatically learns from successive trials to optimize the light field with respect to the experimental goal). Applications of quantum control and its point of view to other fields are now becoming numerous: control of electronic, as well as nuclear, dynamics; automatic testing of theorems; control of large molecules in solution (including proteins); use of quantum control to discover the nature of chemical reactions; optimization of multiphoton microscopy; and quantum control concepts applied to develop a molecular scale pH meter.

    please note this fact:

    “control of large molecules in solution (including proteins)”

    It is called evidence getawitness.

  47. BA77,

    Thanks for that information. I looked up Kent Wilson — an interesting figure who died around 2000. You cited a conference abstract but not a peer-reviewed paper — more important, I don’t think even the abstract supports your claims as you have put them.

    In any event, inspired by your comment, I looked up some more recent work in the field. I found a review article by Asher Peres and Daniel R. Terno, “Quantum Information and Relativity Theory,” that you might be interested in. It’s in Reviews of Modern Physics 76 (2004), 93-123. The section on quantum nonlocality reads as follows:

    Phenomena like those illustrated in Fig. 1 are often attributed to ‘‘quantum nonlocality’’ and have led some authors to speculate on the possibility of superluminal communication (actually, instantaneous communication). One of these proposals (Herbert, 1981) looked reasonably serious and aroused enough interest to lead to investigations disproving its possibility (Glauber, 1986) and in particular to the discovery of the no-cloning
    theorem (Dieks, 1982; Wootters and Zurek, 1982). Let us examine more closely the origin of these claims of nonlocality.

    Bell’s theorem (1964) asserts that it is impossible to mimic quantum theory by introducing a set of objective local ‘‘hidden’’ variables. It follows that any classical imitation of quantum mechanics is necessarily nonlocal. However Bell’s theorem does not imply the existence of any nonlocality in quantum theory itself. In particular, relativistic quantum field theory is manifestly local. The simple and obvious fact is that information has to be carried by material objects, quantized or not. Therefore quantum measurements do not allow any information to be transmitted faster than the characteristic velocity that appears in the Green’s functions of the particles emitted in the experiment. In a Lorentz-invariant theory, this limit is the velocity of light.

    In summary, relativistic causality cannot be violated by quantum measurements. The only physical assumption that is needed to prove this assertion is that Lorentz transformations of the spacetime coordinates are implemented in quantum theory by unitary transformations of the various operators. This is the same as saying that the Lorentz group is a valid symmetry of the physical system (Weinberg, 1995). (Emphasis added)

    I’m not sure how, or whether, Wilson’s experiments have been followed up since his death. Clearly, however, your claims about “transcendent” (e.g., non-material) information being communicated faster than light should not be accepted without question.

  48. Getawitness,

    I can’t believe you are questioning the validity of quantum non-locality.

    Quantum Nonlocality and the Possibility of Superluminal Effects

    John G. Cramer


    of special note:

    Nonlocality means that in quantum systems correlations not possible through simple memory are somehow being enforced faster-than-light across space and time. Nonlocality, peculiar though it is, is a fact of quantum systems which has been repeatedly demonstrated in laboratory experiments.


    An account of the overarching metaphysics of Western science explicates why the violation of the Bell Inequalities is so astonishing,;gl=us

    Bell’s inequality test: more ideal than ever

    Alain Aspect

    of special note:
    The experimental violation of Bell’s inequalities confirms that a pair of
    entangled photons separated by hundreds of metres must be
    considered a single non-separable object — it is impossible to assign
    local physical reality to each photon.


    In 1982 a remarkable event took place. At the University of Paris a research team led by physicist Alain Aspect performed what may turn out to be one of the most important experiments of the 20th century. You did not hear about it on the evening news. In fact, unless you are in the habit of reading scientific journals you probably have never even heard Aspect’s name, though there are some who believe his discovery may change the face of science.
    Aspect and his team discovered that under certain circumstances subatomic particles such as electrons are able to instantaneously communicate with each other regardless of the distance separating them. It doesn’t matter whether they are 10 feet or 10 billion miles apart.

    Two-setting Bell Inequalities for Graph States
    Dated: April 14, 2006)

    Bell inequalities [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8] have already been
    used for several decades as an essential tool for pointing
    out the impossibility of local realism in describing the results
    arising from correlation measurements on quantum

    [1] J.S. Bell, Physics 1, 195 (1964); for a review see R.
    Werner and M. Wolf, Quant. Inf. Comp. 1 (3), 1
    (2001); for results on multipartite Bell inequalities see
    Refs. [3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8] and G. Svetlichny, Phys. Rev.
    D 35, 3066 (1987); A.V. Belinskii and D.N. Klyshko,
    Usp. Fiz. Nauk 163 (8), 1 (1993); N. Gisin and H.
    Bechmann-Pasquinucci, Phys. Lett. A 246, 1 (1998); A.
    Peres, Found. Phys. 29, 589 (1999); D. Collins, N. Gisin,
    S. Popescu, D. Roberts, and V. Scarani, Phys. Rev.
    Lett. 88, 170405 (2002); W. Laskowski, T. Paterek, M.
    ukowski, and ? C. Brukner, Phys. Rev. Lett. 93, 200401
    [2] M. Froissart, Nuovo Cimento B 64, 241 (1981).
    [3] N.D. Mermin, Phys. Rev. Lett. 65, 1838 (1990).
    [4] M. Ardehali, Phys. Rev. A 46, 5375 (1992).
    [5] S. Popescu and D. Rohrlich, Phys. Lett. A 166, 293
    [6] I. Pitowsky and K. Svozil, Phys. Rev. A 64, 014102
    [7] M. ?Zukowski and ? C. Brukner, Phys. Rev. Lett. 88,
    210401 (2002).
    [8] R.F. Werner and M.M. Wolf, Phys. Rev. A 64, 032112

    I could go a lot further for the evidence is extensive and crushing, If you insist on denying quantum non-locality, I shall not waste my time debating you any more for it is impossible to debate someone who is that unreasonable!

  49. BA77,

    I’m sorry not to continue the debate with you. I’ll just point out that your first and third sources are relatively old (1997 and 1999); your second source is in philosophy, not experimental science, and is a dissertation, not a peer-reviewed publication; the Talbot paper (also not peer-reviewed) contains nonsense worthy of Shirley MacLaine or Tom Cruise; and the cite from arxiv.org is, first, not peer reviewed, and, second, of unclear relevance to your overall claims. So: one peer-reviewed scientific paper, from a decade ago. The average citation half-life of a paper in particle physics is less than five years. So that’s old.

    I’m asking about the experimental confirmation of what you’re saying now, in 2007. Consider this: the Cramer paper you cited was from 1997. On John Cramer’s website is an August 2007 presentation, by him, in which he says the experiments to test his idea of faster-than-light communication haven’t even been done! In the PowerPoint he writes that “There are no obvious “show stoppers” that would prevent the proposed measurements. Nevertheless, because of their implications, they have a low probability of success.” His emphasis. So, pardon my skepticism, but you’re blowing smoke.

  50. getawitness, he is talking about two way communication, which works off of the FACT that quantum non-locality telling an entangled particle what to do is already an established fact. Quantum non-locality has been pretty much accepted in physics (except by die-hard materialists) ever since Aspects work in 1982.

    Confirmation of a quantum non-locality is called Bell inequalities, thus the eight references I cited;

    [1] J.S. Bell, Physics 1, 195 (1964); for a review see R.
    Werner and M. Wolf, Quant. Inf. Comp. 1 (3), 1
    (2001); for results on multipartite Bell inequalities see
    Refs. [3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8] and G. Svetlichny, Phys. Rev.
    D 35, 3066 (1987); A.V. Belinskii and D.N. Klyshko,
    Usp. Fiz. Nauk 163 (8), 1 (1993); N. Gisin and H.
    Bechmann-Pasquinucci, Phys. Lett. A 246, 1 (1998); A.
    Peres, Found. Phys. 29, 589 (1999); D. Collins, N. Gisin,
    S. Popescu, D. Roberts, and V. Scarani, Phys. Rev.
    Lett. 88, 170405 (2002); W. Laskowski, T. Paterek, M.
    ukowski, and ? C. Brukner, Phys. Rev. Lett. 93, 200401
    [2] M. Froissart, Nuovo Cimento B 64, 241 (1981).
    [3] N.D. Mermin, Phys. Rev. Lett. 65, 1838 (1990).
    [4] M. Ardehali, Phys. Rev. A 46, 5375 (1992).
    [5] S. Popescu and D. Rohrlich, Phys. Lett. A 166, 293
    [6] I. Pitowsky and K. Svozil, Phys. Rev. A 64, 014102
    [7] M. ?Zukowski and ? C. Brukner, Phys. Rev. Lett. 88,
    210401 (2002).
    [8] R.F. Werner and M.M. Wolf, Phys. Rev. A 64, 032112

    You can look them up if you want, but the main point is that Quantum non-locality is an established fact, I quoted Cramer’s paper for the fact that he states it has been proven repeatedly before he tries to develope his thesis for two way communication.

    But I am not interested in two way communication. I am only interested in the fact that “information” itself is proven to be transcendent of any known physical laws; plus it is proven to have dominion over sub-atomic particles as well as over complex protein molecules, and thus provides a clear mechanism for the Theistic postulation for ID of Information implementation from a higher dimension.

    If you deny the validity of quantum non-locality (which it appears you are doing), you have not done your homework and are needlessly wasting both of our time.

  51. BA77, I’m not questioning quantum nonlocality as such. I just don’t understand the implications you claim to draw from it or this notion that information is “transcendent.” Nor can I see what any of this has to do with ID.

  52. Dembski and Marks are dealing with biology. Do you disagree?

    Neither has ever been active in biology, so it’s difficult for us to purge them from a field they’ve never been in.

    Damn, we’ll have to invade computer science if we want to get a bit of good old-fashioned persecution going!


  53. getawitness,

    What is the main question of ID? I would say the main question is, Where did the information come from in the first place? As such, is it not crucial to define the actual “physical” characteristics of information?

    When we look for physical characteristics of information we realize truly weird stuff.

    If we write on a paper is the ink or paper information? If we record the information of a tape recorder, Is our sound or the magnetic tape information? If we record the tape to a CD is the binary code or laser now the information?

    No of course not, the information was just transfered through several different material mediums, The information itself stayed constant, though transfer through different mediums ,clearly demonstrating that it is completely transcendent of the material medium it was on.
    But is information passive or dominant of material objects?
    One could argue that the proof of universal constants remaining constant throughout the history of the universe is proof of “information” being dom^in^ate of the “material” realm.
    And in my view it is a very strong proof, Yet the violation of Bell inequalities, actually demonstrated the active “real-time” physical dominance of “true” information over the material realm.

    When something becomes physically true (wave collapse) in one part of this universe this “information” of reality is transmitted to all points of this universe instantaneously, and if a wave/particle in any other part of the universe happens to be entangled with the wave collapse it is proven to be instantaneously effected. Thus, “true” information demonstrates its dom^inance of the physical realm on top of the unchanging universal constants
    This is why the violation of Bell inequalities is so important to ID, it gives concrete proof of “true” information unique transcendent physical status in this universe.

    When I showed proof that “protein” molecules are also subject to quantum non-locality, I showed that “true” information is not limited to the sub-atomic realm but that “true” information extends its influence over the material realm up to the macroscopic level of the complex biological molecules that construct life. Thus showing/proving that the mechanism for the “information implementation” of Theistic ID does indeed exist in nature.

  54. Bob O’H,

    “Dembski and Marks are dealing with biology. Do you disagree?

    Neither has ever been active in biology, so it’s difficult for us to purge them from a field they’ve never been in.”

    Bob, the master of disingenuous answers or Bob, the king of the “distinction without difference” remarks.

    Bob, academia has purged/restricted them for investigating areas of biology. Whether they are in biology or not is of no consequence. They are being restricted. Did you ever think that the vacuousness of your answers really makes the other person’s points?

    I noticed you did not take up any of the other suggestions about defending either ID proponents or those in biology willing to accept ID proponents. Are you willing to defend them? How many ID proponents do you know that are active in biology?

  55. BA77

    I will agree that information is not dependent on any particular type of media so in that sense it transcends the material which carries it. But I keep getting stuck when trying to envision information in the absence of any media at all. How can information exist without a carrier for it? In this sense it is like energy and is another case supporting the concept that information obeys the laws of thermodynamics. Information, like energy, is an abstract which is not real absent some material carrier for it.

  56. ellazimm

    You won’t get any argument from me about common descent. The evidence for it is compelling IMO. ID neither supports nor refutes the concept of common descent. Individual ID proponents differ on whether or not they find the evidence for common descent sufficient to make the case. The same is true of the age of the earth – ID doesn’t support or refute any particular number of years. Again I find the evidence that the earth is billions of years old compelling.

  57. ellazimm you stated:

    I was invited to present some of the empirical evidence in support of evolutionary theory I would have to say the molecular sequence evidence is very compelling.

    To Which I refer you to:

    Potentially decisive evidence against pseudogene ‘shared mistakes’


    as well as:

    Endogenous retroviruses regulate periimplantation placental growth and differentiation.


    as well as:


    New Findings Challenge Established Views on Human Genome

    BETHESDA, Md., Wed., June 13, 2007 – An international research consortium today published a set of papers that promise to reshape our understanding of how the human genome functions. The findings challenge the traditional view of our genetic blueprint as a tidy collection of independent genes, pointing instead to a complex network in which genes, along with regulatory elements and other types of DNA sequences that do not code for proteins, interact in overlapping ways not yet fully understood.

    as well as:


    The science of life is undergoing changes so jolting that even its top researchers are feeling something akin to shell-shock. Just four years after scientists finished mapping the human genome – the full sequence of 3 billion DNA “letters” folded within every cell – they find themselves confronted by a biological jungle deeper, denser, and more difficult to penetrate than anyone imagined.

    Naturalists always say that evolution is proven true when we look at the 98.8% similarity between certain segments of the DNA in a Chimpanzee and compare them with the same segments of DNA of a Human. Yet that similarity is not nearly good enough to be considered “conclusive” scientific proof. For starters, recent preliminary comparisons of the complete genome of chimps and the complete genome of man yield a similarity of only 96%. As well, the December 2006 issue of PLoS ONE reported that human and chimpanzee gene copy numbers differ by a whopping 6.4% (Hahn). Whereas, Dr. Hugh Ross states the similarity may in actually be closer to 85% to 90%. Secondarily, at the protein level only 29% of genes code for the exact same amino acid sequences in chimps and humans (Nature, 2005). As well, our DNA is 92% similar to mice as well as 92% similar to zebrafish (Simmons PhD., Billions of Missing Links). So are we 92% mouse or are we 92% zebrafish? Our DNA is 70% similar to a fruit fly; So are we therefore 70% fruit fly? Our DNA is 75% similar to a worm; So are we 75% worm? No, of course not!! This type of reasoning is simple minded in its approach and clearly flawed in establishing a solid scientific foundation on which to draw valid inferences from! Clearly, we must find if the DNA is flexible enough to accommodate any type of mutations happening to it in the first place. This one point of evidence, (The actual flexibility of DNA to any random mutations), must be firmly established, first and foremost, before we can draw any meaningful inferences from the genetic data we gather from organisms!! Fortunately we, through the miracle of science, can now establish this crucial point of DNA flexibility. The primary thing that is crushing to the evolutionary theory is this fact. Of the random mutations that do occur, and have manifested traits in organisms that can be measured, at least 999,999 out of 1,000,000 (99.9999%) of these mutations to the DNA have been found to produce traits in organisms that are harmful (slightly detrimental) and/or fa^tal to the life-form having the mutation! (Sanford; Genetic Entropy page 38)

    “I have seen estimates of the incidence of beneficial mutations which range from one in one thousand up to one in one million. The best estimates seem to be one in one million (Gerrish and Lenski, 1998) Since neutral mutations can be inferred to almost never occur in a genome, then the ratio of deleterious to beneficial mutations seems to be one million to one.” (Sanford; Genetic Entropy, page 38: Note: this statement has been revised to reflect the evolutionary belief of some totally neutral mutations of Gerrish and Lenski)


    Even if there were totally neutral mutations, which is highly unlikely given the overwhelming interrelated complexity of the information in the genome, Gerrish and Lenski most likely used a incomplete measure of fitness/information in order to arrive at their one in a million number for beneficial mutations. I maintain that their, one in a million, estimate for beneficial mutations is flawed and that ALL mutations to a genome will be found to be harmful/fatal when using a correct measure of fitness/information. The following articles points out this flaw, in measuring the total fitness/information of a organism, by evolutionary scientists and thus skewing the already crushing, but biased, mutational studies:



    ” Bergman (2004) has studied the topic of beneficial mutations. Among other things, he did a simple literature search via Biological Abstracts and Medline. He found 453,732 “mutation” hits, but among these only 186 mentioned the word “beneficial” (about 4 in 10,000). When those 186 references were reviewed, almost all the presumed “beneficial mutations” were only beneficial in a very narrow sense- but each mutation consistently involved loss of function changes-hence loss of information.”

    In fact, from consistent findings such as these, it is increasingly apparent that Genetic Entropy is the overriding foundational rule for all of “living” biology (bacteria and up) with no exceptions at all, and that belief in beneficial mutations is nothing more than wishful speculation that has no foundation in science whatsoever:

    The foundational rule for biology can be stated something like this:

    All adaptations away from a parent species for a sub-species, which increase fitness to a particular environment, will always come at a loss of information from the parent species. (note: viruses stay within the principle of Genetic Entropy because the trivial gain in complexity they gather is always less than the complexity in life they destroy)

    Professional evolutionary biologists are hard-pressed to cite even one clear-cut example of evolution through a beneficial mutation to DNA that would violate the principle of genetic entropy. Although evolutionists try to claim the lactase persistence mutation as a lonely example of a beneficial mutation in humans, lactase persistence is actually a loss of a instruction in the genome to turn the lactase enzyme off, so the mutation clearly does not violate genetic entropy. Yet at the same time, the evidence for the detrimental nature of mutations in humans is clearly overwhelming, for doctors have already cited over 3500 mutational disorders (Dr. Gary Parker).

    “It is entirely in line with the al nature of naturally occurring mutations that extensive tests have agreed in showing the vast majority of them to be detrimental to the organisms in its job of surviving and reproducing, just as changes ally introduced into any artificial mechanism are predominantly harmful to its useful operation” H.J. Muller (Received a Nobel Prize for his work on mutations to DNA)

    “But there is no evidence that DNA mutations can provide the sorts of variation needed for evolution… There is no evidence for beneficial mutations at the level of macroevolution, but there is also no evidence at the level of what is commonly regarded as microevolution.” Jonathan Wells (PhD. Molecular Biology)

    Man has over 3 billion base pairs of DNA code. Even if there were just a 1% difference of DNA between monkeys and humans, that would still be 30 million base pairs of DNA difference. It is easily shown, mathematically, for it to be fantastically impossible for evolution to ever occur between monkeys and man, or monkeys and anything else for that matter. Since, it is an established fact that at least 999,999 in 1,000,000 of any mutations to DNA will be harmful and/or , then it is also an established fact that there is at least a 999,999^30,000,000 to one chance that the monkey will fail to reach man by evolutionary processes. The monkey will hit a end of harmful/fatal mutations that will kill him or severely mutilate him before him. The poor monkey barely even gets out of the evolutionary starting gate before he is crushed by blind chance. This would still be true even if the entire universe were populated with nothing but monkeys to begin with! This number (999,999^30,000,000), is fantastically impossible for any hypothetical beneficial mutation to ever overcome! Worse yet for the naturalists, mathematician William Dembski PhD. has worked out the foundational math that shows the mutation/natural selection scenario to be impossible EVEN IF the harmful/fatal rate for mutation to the DNA were only 50%. The naturalist stamps his feet again and says that symbiotic gene transfer, cross-breeding (yes they, desperately, suggested cross-breeding as a solution), gene duplication and multiplication of chromosomes, alternative splicing etc .. etc .. are the reasons for the changes in DNA between humans and apes. They say these things with utmost confidence without even batting an eye. Incredibly, this is done in spite of solid evidences testifying to the contrary. Indeed, even if a hypothetical beneficial mutation to the DNA ever did occur, it would be of absolutely no use for it would be swallowed in a vast ocean of slightly detrimental mutations that would be far below the culling power of natural selection to remove from a genome!

    “The theory of gene duplication in its present form is unable to account for the origin of new genetic information” Ray Bohlin, (PhD. in molecular and cell biology)

    “Evolution through random duplications”… While it sounds quite sophisticated and respectable, it does not withstand honest and critical assessment” John C. Sanford (PhD Genetics; inventor of the biolistic “gene gun” process! Holds over 25 patents!)

    The human genome, according to Bill Gates the founder of Microsoft, far, far surpasses in complexity any computer program ever written by man. The data compression (multiple meanings) of some stretches of human DNA is estimated to be up to 12 codes thick (Trifonov, 1989)! No line of computer code ever written by man approaches that level of data compression (poly-functional complexity). Further evidence for the inherent complexity of the DNA is found in a another study. In June 2007, a international team of scientists, named ENCODE, published a study that indicates the genome contains very little unused sequences and, in fact, is a complex, interwoven network. This “complex interwoven network” throughout the entire DNA code makes the human genome severely poly-constrained to random mutations (Sanford; Genetic Entropy, 2005; page 141). This means the DNA code is now much more severely limited in its chance of ever having a hypothetical beneficial mutation since almost the entire DNA code is now proven to be intimately connected to many other parts of the DNA code. Thus even though a random mutation to DNA may be able to change one part of an organism for the better, it is now proven much more likely to harm many other parts of the organism that depend on that one particular part being as it originally was. Since evolution was forced, by the established proof of Mendelian genetics, to no longer view the whole organism as to what natural selection works upon, but to view the whole organism as a multiple independent collection of genes that can be selected or discarded as natural selection sees fit, this “complex interwoven network” finding is extremely bad news, if not absolutely crushing, for the population genetics scenario of evolution developed by Haldane, Fisher and Wright (page 52 and 53: Genetic Entropy: Sanford 2005)!

    ellazimm, as you can see I am not impressed in the least with molecular similarities to establish proof of evolution.

  58. Jerry @ 18

    I brought in Stalin because there is lots of evidence of purges going on in biology though they are not eliminated the same way that Stalin did the elimination.

    (emphasis mine)
    Jerry @ 56

    Bob, academia has purged/restricted them for investigating areas of biology. Whether they are in biology or not is of no consequence.

    (emphasis mine)

    It makes all the difference in the world to your original claim.

    As for defending ID proponents, if they’re genuinely trying to do good science, then I have no problems with them. I suspect we might have to agree to disagree on what we think of as “good science”, though.


  59. DaveScot,

    That is the beauty of non-locality, It establishes that “true information” is beyond the second law of thermodynamics, for non-local “information” is in fact telling the energy exactly what to do. The first law states that energy can be neither created nor destroyed, and thus energy is, to a certain degree, proven to be immune to the second laws destructiveness, so it stands to strong reason that information, since it has dom^in^ion over energy, carries this same quality (to a certain degree) of indestructibility. As well, since energy carries the quality of timelessness, as pointed out by Einstein, it also stands to strong reason that “true information” (i.e. information that has do^minion over this entire energy/material realm ,,, by universal constants,,, by non-locality) is also eternal or timeless by its nature (how else could it exercise do^min^ion if it was “less timeless than” energy?).

    This is where a Theistic perspective helps in gaining further understanding, for we are now in fairly good position to state this following fact, from our logic; All “true information” that exist or that will exist in this material realm is required, by its own timeless, indestructible quality, to have always exited prior to its actuation in this realm.

    The fact that “true information” had to be actuated from the timeless dimension of energy, requires that the information was chosen to be actuated by some timeless Being who chose to exercise His will and actuate the event.

    Though I am probably not nearly as clear as I need be to make this point, The full implications of the logic require the Theistic postulation of a omnipotent omniscient Mind to be true. This fact must be true in order for information to exercise the control it does over the energy/material realm.

    I’m attaching a post that I have posted before, It may help shed a little more light on what I’m trying to say.

    What is Truth?

    To varying degrees everyone looks for truth. A few people have traveled to distant lands seeking gurus in their quest to find “Truth”. People are happy when they discover a new truth into the mysteries of life. People who have deep insights into the truth of how things actually work are considered wise. In the bible Jesus says “You will know the truth and the truth will set you free.” as well as “I am the TRUTH, the way, and the life.” So, since truth is considered such a good thing, let us look for truth in a common object; a simple rock.
    Few people would try to argue that a rock is not real. Someone who would argue that it is not real could bang his head on the rock until he was satisfied the rock is real. A blind man in a darkened cave would feel the rock hitting his head just as well as a sighted man who saw the rock coming. The rock is real and its reality is not dependent on our observation. Having stated the obvious lets look at what the rock is actually made of.
    A rock is composed of three basic ingredients; energy, force and truth. From Einstein’s’ famous equation (e=mc2) we know that all matter (solids, liquids and gases) of the universe is made of energy. This energy is “woven” by various forces into the atoms of the rock. The amount of energy woven by these complex interactions of various forces into the rock is tremendous. This tremendous energy that is in the rock is clearly demonstrated by the detonation of atom . This woven energy is found in each and every individual “particle” of every atom in the trillions upon trillions of atoms in the rock. Woven energy is the “substance” of the rock. It is what gives the rock its physicality of being solid. Yet there is another ingredient which went into making the rock that is often neglected to be looked at as a “real” component of the rock. It is the transcendent spiritual component of truth. If truth did not exist the rock would not exist. This is as obvious as the fact that the rock would not exist if energy and/or force did not exist. It is the truth in and of the logical laws of the universal constants that govern the energy and force of the rock that enable the rock to be a rock in the first place.
    Is truth independent and nt of the energy and force? Yes of course, there are many philosophical truths that are not dependent on energy or force for them to still be true. Yet energy and force are always subject to what truth tells them they can and cannot do. That is to say, the rock cannot exist without truth yet truth can exist without the rock. Energy and force must obey the truth that is above them or else it can’t possibly exist. Since truth dictates what energy and/or force can or cannot do, truth tes energy and force. Energy and force do not te truth. If all energy and/or force stopped existing the truth that ruled the energy and force in the rock would still be logically true. Thus, truth is eternal. The logical truth existed before the rock existed. The logical truth exists while the rock exists. The logical truth will exist after the rock is long gone. It is also obvious that truth is omnipresent. The truth that is in the rock on this world is the same truth that is in a rock on the other side of the universe on another world. Thus, truth is present everywhere at all times. It has been scientifically proven, by quantum non-locality, that whenever something becomes physically “real” (wave collapse of entangled electron) in any part of the universe this “information of reality” is instantaneously communicated everywhere in the universe. Thus, truth is “aware” of everything that goes on in the universe instantaneously. This universal awareness gives truth a vital characteristic of being omniscient. This instantaneous communication of truth to all points in the universe also happens to defy the speed of light; a “truth” that energy and even gravity happen to be subject to. This scientific proof of quantum non-locality also proves that truth is not a “passive” component of this universe. Truth is actually scientifically demonstrated to be the “active” nt component of this universe. Truth is not a passive set of rules written on a sheet of paper somewhere. Truth is the “living governor” of this universe that has dominion over all other components of this universe.
    Well, lets see what we have so far; Truth is eternal (it has always existed and will always exist); Truth is omnipresent (it is present everywhere in the universe at all times); Truth is omnipotent (it has dominion over everything else in the universe); Truth has a vital characteristic of omniscience (it knows everything that is happening everywhere in the universe); and Truth is active” (it is aware of everything that is happening and instantaneously makes appropriate adjustments wherever needed in the universe). Surprisingly, being eternal, omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient and active are some of the very characteristics that are used by theologians to describe God. Thus, by the strict rules of logic this means spiritual truth emanates from God. So in answer to our question “What is Truth?” we can answer that truth comes from God.
    Jesus says that He is “The Truth”. This is a VERY fantastic claim! If Jesus is speaking a truth, which I believe He is from the personal miracles I’ve seen in my life, then by the rules of logic this makes Jesus the ultimate and all encompassing expression all God’s truth in this universe. In other words, all individual truths of this universe, such as all the laws of physics, and all the truths in philosophy, find their authority and ultimate expression in Jesus Christ.

  60. ellazimm you also stated:

    but no fossil out of place,….


    Most people presume the evidence in the fossil record overwhelmingly confirms gradual evolution from a single common ancestor. Yet this is not the case at all. The fossil record itself is one of the most crushing things for naturalists. What is termed the “Cambrian explosion” is a total departure from the naturalistic theory of evolution. It is in the Cambrian explosion, some 540 million years ago, that we find the sudden appearance of the many diverse and complex forms of life. These complex life-forms appear with no evidence of transition from the bacteria and few other “simple” life-forms that immediately preceded them in the fossil record. This following quote clearly illustrates this point.

    “Yet, here is the real puzzle of the Cambrian Explosion for the theory of evolution. All the known phyla (large categories of biological classification), except one, first appear in the Cambrian period. There are no ancestors. There are no intermediates. Fossil experts used to think that the Cambrian lasted 75 million years…. Eventually the Cambrian was shortened to only 30 million years. If that wasn’t bad enough, the time frame of the real work of bringing all these different creatures into existence was shortened to the first five to ten million years of the Cambrian. This is extraordinarily fast! Harvard’s Stephen Jay Gould stated, “Fast is now a lot faster than we thought, and that is extraordinarily interesting.” What an understatement! “Extraordinarily impossible” might be a better phrase! …. The differences between the creatures that suddenly appear in the Cambrian are enormous. In fact these differences are so large many of these animals are one of a kind. Nothing like them existed before and nothing like them has ever appeared again.” Evolution’s Big Bang; Dr. Raymond G. Bohlin, University of Illinois (B.S., zoology), North Texas State University (M.S., population genetics), University of Texas at Dallas (M.S., Ph.D., molecular biology).

    The “real work” of the beginning of the Cambrian explosion may in actuality be as short as a two to three million year time frame (Ross: Creation as Science 2006). If this blatant, out of nowhere, appearance of all the different phyla was not bad enough for naturalists, the fossil record shows that there was actually more variety of phyla at the end of the Cambrian explosion than there is today due to extinction.

    “A simple way of putting it is that currently we have about 38 phyla of different groups of animals, but the total number of phyla discovered during the Cambrian explosion (including those in China, Canada, and elsewhere) adds up to over 50 phyla. (Actually the number 50 was first quoted as over 100 for a while, but then the consensus became 50-plus.) That means there are more phyla in the very, very beginning, where we found the first fossils, than exist now.” “Also, the animal explosion caught people’s attention when the Chinese confirmed they found a genus now called Yunnanzoon that was present in the very beginning of the Cambrian explosion. This genus is considered a chordate, and the phylum Chordata includes fish, mammals and man. An evolutionist would say the ancestor of humans was present then. Looked at more objectively, you could say the most complex animal group, the chordates, were represented at the very beginning, and they did not go through a slow gradual evolution to become a chordate.” Dr. Paul Chien PhD., chairman of the biology department at the University of San Francisco, Dr. Chien also possesses the largest collection of Chinese Cambrian fossils in North America.


    The evolutionary theory would have us believe we should have more phyla today due to ongoing evolutionary processes. The hard facts of science betray the naturalists once again. The naturalist stamps his feet and says the evidence for the fossils transmutation into radically new forms is out there somewhere; we just have not found it yet. To justify this belief, naturalists will often say that soft bodied fossils were not preserved in the Cambrian fossil record, so transitional fossils were just not recorded in the fossil record in the first place. Yet, the Chinese Cambrian fossil record is excellent in its preservation of delicate – ied fossils that clearly show much of the detail of the body structures of these first creatures. So the problem for naturalists has not been alleviated. In fact the problem has become much worse. As Dr. Ray Bohlin stated, some of these recently discovered fossils are extremely unique and defy any sort of transitional scenario to any other fossils found during the Cambrian explosion.

    As well as the fossil record itself, recent DNA analysis rules out any transitional scenarion between phyla in the Cambrian Explosion:

    “The new molecular based phylogeny has several important implications. Foremost among them is the disappearance of “intermediate” taxa between sponges, cnidarians, ctenophores, and the last common ancestor of bilaterians or “Urbilateria.”…A corollary is that we have a major gap in the stem leading to the Urbilataria. We have lost the hope, so common in older evolutionary reasoning, of reconstructing the morphology of the “coelomate ancestor” through a scenario involving successive grades of increasing complexity based on the anatomy of extant “primitive” lineages.” From an article published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA, in 2000

    In spite of this crushing evidence found in the Cambrian explosion and DNA analysis of different phyla, our naturalistic friend continues to imagine that all life on earth descended from a common ancestor and continues to imagine missing links with every new fossil discovery that makes newspaper headlines. Yet, the true story of life since the Cambrian explosion, that is actually told by the fossil record itself, tells a very different story than the imaginative tales found in naturalistic newspaper accounts. Where the story of life, since the Cambrian explosion, is extremely clear to read is in the sea creatures who fossilize quickly in ocean sediments. We find fossils in the fossil record that appear suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere, fully-formed. They have no apparent immediate evolutionary predecessor. They, just, appear suddenly in the fossil record unique and fully-formed. This is exactly what one would expect from an infinitely powerful and transcendent Creator continually introducing new life-forms on earth. Even more problematic for the naturalists is the fact once a fossil suddenly appears in the fossil record it remains surprisingly stable in its basic structure for as long as it is found in the fossil record. The fossil record can offer not even one clear example of transition from one fossil form to another fossil form out of millions of collected fossils. Some sea creatures, such as certain sharks which are still alive today, have unchanging fossil records going back hundreds of millions of years to when they first suddenly appeared in the fossil record without a predecessor.

    “Now, after over 120 years of the most extensive and painstaking geological exploration of every continent and ocean bottom, the picture is infinitely more vivid and complete than it was in 1859. Formations have been discovered containing hundreds of billions of fossils and our museums now are filled with over 100 million fossils of 250,000 different species. The availability of this profusion of hard scientific data should permit objective investigators to determine if Darwin was on the right track. What is the picture which the fossils have given us? … The gaps between major groups of organisms have been growing even wider and more undeniable. They can no longer be ignored or rationalized away with appeals to imperfection of the fossil record.” Luther D. Sunderland, Darwin’s Enigma (1988), Fossils and Other Problems, 4th edition, Master Books, p. 9

    “The evidence we find in the geological record is not nearly as compatible with Darwinian natural selection as we would like it to be …. We now have a quarter of a million fossil species but the situation hasn’t changed much. The record of evolution is surprisingly jerky and, ironically, we have even fewer examples of evolutionary transition than in Darwin’s time … so Darwin’s problem has not been alleviated”. Evolutionist David Raup, Curator of Geology at Chicago’s Field Museum of Natural History

    “… Every paleontologist knows that most new species, genera, and families, and that nearly all categories above the level of family appear in the record suddenly and are not led up to by known, gradual, completely continuous transitional sequences.” George Gaylord Simpson (evolutionist), The Major Features of Evolution, New York, Columbia University Press, 1953 p. 360.

    “No wonder paleontologists shied away from evolution for so long. It seems never to happen. Assiduous collecting up cliff faces yields zigzags, minor oscillations, and the very occasional slight accumulation of change over millions of years, at a rate too slow to really account for all the prodigious change that has occurred in evolutionary history. When we do see the introduction of evolutionary novelty, it usually shows up with a bang, and often with no firm evidence that the organisms did not evolve elsewhere! Evolution cannot forever be going on someplace else. Yet that’s how the fossil record has struck many a forlorn paleontologist looking to learn something about evolution.” – Niles Eldredge , “Reinventing Darwin: The Great Evolutionary Debate,” 1996, p.95

    “The extreme rarity of transitional forms in the fossil record persists as the trade secret of paleontology.” Stephen Jay Gould, Professor of Geology and Paleontology at Harvard University and the leading spokesman for evolutionary theory in America prior to his recent .

    “As Niles Eldredge and Stephen Jay Gould pointed out almost three decades ago, the general pattern for the evolution of diversity (as shown by the fossil record) follows precisely this pattern: a burst of rapid diversity following a major ecological change, and then a gradual decline in diversity over relatively long periods of time.” Allen MacNeill PhD.; Teaches introductory biology and evolution at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY.

    The following article is unique in that is shows the principle of Genetic Entropy being obeyed in the Trilobites, over the 250 million year fossil history of their life on earth (Note: the Trilobites appeared suddenly at the very beginning of the Cambrian explosion with no evidence of transmutation from the “simple” creatures that preceded them).

    As you can see, the fossil record is overwhelmingly characterized by suddenness and stability, as well as conforming precisely to the principle of Genetic Entropy (loss of information) when closely scrutinized for loss of diversity over long periods of time. For creatures who have lived in the ocean this fact is extremely clear, because their bones are fossilized in the ocean sediments very quickly. Unfortunately for land creatures, the fossil record is much harder to properly discern due to the rapid disintegration of animals who die on land. The large variety of hominid (man or ape-like) fossils that we do have piece-meal records of are characterized by overlapping histories of “distinctively different and stable” hominid species during the entire time, and the entire geography, each hominid species is found in the fossil record. There is never a transition between ANY of the different hominid species no matter where, or in what era, the hominid fossils are found.

    “If you brought in a smart scientist from another discipline and showed him the meagre evidence we’ve got he’d surely say, “forget it; there isn’t enough to go on.” David Pilbeam, Harvard University paleoanthropologist: from Richard E. Leakey’s book, The Making of Mankind, Sphere Books Limited, Barcelona, 1982, p. 43.

    “If pressed about man’s ancestry, I would have to unequivocally say that all we have is a huge question mark. To date, there has been nothing found to truthfully purport as a transitional species to man, including Lucy, since 1470 was as old and probably older. If further pressed, I would have to state that there is more evidence to suggest an abrupt arrival of man rather than a gradual process of evolving”. Richard Leakey, world’s foremost paleo-anthropologist, in a PBS documentary, 1990.

    Note: The hominid fossil record has now become even more confused, of any imaginary transitional scenario, since Dr. Leakey made this frank, but honest, admission.

    Israeli Researchers: ‘Lucy’ is not direct ancestor of humans Apr 16, 2007

    New Fossil Ape May Shake Human Family Tree August 22, 2007


    As Richard Leakey, the leading hominid fossil expert in the world admitted, if he were pressed, he would have to admit the hard evidence suggests the abrupt arrival of man in the fossil record. Yet if you were to ask an average person if we have evolved from apes he will tell you of course we have and wonder why you would ask such a stupid question, since “everyone knows” this is proven in the fossil record. One hard fact in the fossil record that is not disputed by most naturalists is the fact that man is the youngest distinct species of all species to suddenly appear in the fossil record. I find the fact that man has the scientifically accepted youngest history of any fossil in the fossil record to be extremely interesting and compelling to the position held by the anthropic hypothesis. Though a naturalist may try to inconclusively argue fruit flies or some other small types of animals have evolved into distinct new species since that time, he cannot produce evidence for a genetically and morphologically unique animal with a fossil record younger than mans. This one point of evidence is crucial for both sides and is an extremely important point of contention, for this fact is the primary proposal of the whole anthropic hypothesis in the first place; God created the universe with man in mind as His final goal. Man being the last distinct and separate species to suddenly appear in the fossil record is totally expected by the anthropic hypothesis and is completely contrary to what the naturalistic evolutionary hypothesis would expect. Naturalists do not seem to notice that their theory of evolution expects and even demands there should be clear evidence for a genetically and morphologically unique species on earth somewhere since man first suddenly appeared on earth. Indeed there should be many such unambiguous examples that they could produce.

    “Perhaps the most obvious challenge is to demonstrate evolution empirically. There are, arguably, some 2 to 10 million species on earth. The fossil record shows that most species survive somewhere between 3 and 5 million years. In that case, we ought to be seeing small but significant numbers of originations (new species) … every decade.” Keith Stewart Thomson, Professor of Biology and Dean of the Graduate School, Yale University (Nov. -Dec. American Scientist, 1997 pg. 516)

    For balance to that fact, The current rate of extinction is from 100 to 10,000 species a year. This is between 100 and 1000 times faster than our best estimate of historical rates.


  61. ellazimm you also stated:

    no genetic information without adequate predecessors,


    I think Eugene V Koonin would disagree strongly with your wave of the hand:

    The Biological Big Bang for the major transitions in evolution


    in which he states:


    Major transitions in biological evolution show the same pattern of sudden emergence of diverse forms at a new level of complexity. The relationships between major groups within an emergent new class of biological entities are hard to decipher and do not seem to fit the tree pattern that, following Darwin’s original proposal, remains the nt description of biological evolution. The cases in point include the origin of complex RNA molecules and protein folds; major groups of viruses; archaea and bacteria, and the principal lineages within each of these prokaryotic domains; eukaryotic supergroups; and animal phyla. In each of these pivotal nexuses in life’s history, the principal “types” seem to appear rapidly and fully equipped with the signature features of the respective new level of biological organization. No intermediate “grades” or intermediate forms between different types are detectable. Usually, this pattern is attributed to cladogenesis compressed in time, combined with the inevitable erosion of the phylogenetic signal

  62. ellazimm,

    Two points.

    First, common descent does not point to any mechanism for species creation. It certainly does not point to gradualism versus some other mechanism. Now gradualism is consistent with common descent but does not necessarily flow from it.

    To justify gradualism, you would have to point to some other evidence that strongly suggests that this mechanism is possible and did in fact happen.

    Second, homologies or like parts in various species also do not point to gradualism. The same comments for common descent are appropriate here.

    So to briefly sum up, Neither common descent or homologies and the information that supports these two concepts cannot per se be used for support of gradualism. It could just as easily be used to justify some intelligence involved in the process. Common descent and homologies are consistent with any of the ID mechanisms for evolution.

    The main argument for all sides in this debate is negative evidence against the other sides and has nothing to do with common descent and homologies. So the neo Darwinists will actually use theological arguments against ID saying something like bad design or inappropriate design would never be what God would have used. ID also uses negative arguments against neo Darwinism by pointing out the lack of forensic evidence supporting their position.

    As an aside, Behe uses the argument of interacting systems (as a measure of design and its complexity) and the lack of any evidence as to how these systems could arise to justify agency in their origin. See Dembski’s latest post today about E.O. Wilson on what ID is about and how it is distorted by anti ID people.

  63. DaveScot,
    I think this experiment has the evidence to completely separate “information” from any materialistic basis:


    of special note:
    But whereas in Bell’s test these quantities are derived from the so-called ‘linear’ polarization of the photons — crudely, whether their electromagnetic fields oscillate in one direction or the other — Zeilinger’s experiment looks at a different sort of polarization, called elliptical polarization.

    Like Bell’s, Zeilinger’s equality proved false. This doesn’t rule out all possible non-local realistic s, but it does exclude an important subset of them. Specifically, it shows that if you have a group of photons that all have independent polarizations, then you can’t ascribe specific polarizations to each. It’s rather like saying that you know there are particular numbers of blue, white and silver cars in a car park — but it is meaningless even to imagine saying which ones are which.

    So Dave, when try to derive a specific measurement for information, in a group of photons, they have uncertainty in the photons, yet when an observer makes a measurement for a specific photon only then does the information become specific.

    I consider this experiment hard proof that information is not inherent to photons but is indeed independent of it.

  64. Bob O’H,

    So if I said the following in #18

    “I brought in Stalin because there is lots of evidence of purges/squelching of dissent going on in academia of those investigating/discussing the relation of ID to biology though they are not eliminated the same way that Stalin did the elimination.

    I admit Stalin was just an hyperbole to emphasize a point but I find the comparison somewhat appropriate. Those who disagree are eliminated or silenced. Let me know why that is not an appropriate comparison.”

    it sounds like you would be in agreement. I am glad to hear that so just assume this is what I meant in #18 and I look forward to you being in the forefront of defending ID proponents with proper credentials in the future.

  65. Jerry – I’d now like an apology and a mea culpa from you for putting words into my mouth?

    I still wouldn’t agree that there is silencing of dissent. For example, the Evolutionary Informatics Lab pages are still available, and are even gaining new members.

    If I felt an ID proponent was being unfairly attacked, and I was in a position to speak up, I would. But, quite frankly, it isn’t an issue around here, and there is at least one ID supporter (or creationist, I’m not sure of the guy’s exact views) in our technical university. He’s a biologist.


  66. Bob O’H,

    Mea culpa? Come on; give me a break. I am just pointing out the insincerity of your remarks by what you tend to disagree with. I corrected what you said was not right and admitted the hyperbole. Sometimes it necessary to be absurd to highlight the absurd and hyperbole can get others to remark on the hyperbole but not the substance and that is revealing. By putting words in your mouth I was illustrating absurdity with absurdity. I knew you would not agree with it but the words I used were the logical implications of what you had said or failed to say.

    And to say there is no silencing of people who hold ID positions is one of the more absurd comments I have heard yet. To say that Richard Sternberg still holds his job with the implication that nothing has happened to him or he is free to do what he wants at his job is a ludicrous point and essentially reveals what you are about. Why would you make such an absurd comment?

    If you don’t think there is a silencing of dissent then you have you head in the ground or pathologically insincere.

    “it isn’t an issue around here”

    So I assume there is occasional discussion of ID and it relevance for biology and that the ID supporter can express his views in biology meetings, bring it up in biology courses as possible explanation for why Darwin’s ideas don’t work in evolution and be taken seriously by the other faculty. Also since you say you are at a university, then criticism of Darwin’s ideas are I assume fair game in biology courses. After all a paradigm with no empirical backing should include criticism as part of an academic discussion. So I assume all this is going on at your university. I also assume there is a reaction to the suppression openly expressed by the Council of Europe at your university as unwarranted interference with academic freedom and that someone is leading the challenge to their proposed fiat.

    ID and biology are completely in sync so 99% of biology that is researched or taught is not a problem. However, that doesn’t include evolutionary biology and without this exception one would never know the difference between the biology that an ID proponent taught and researched from those who are anti ID.

    Bob, you universally fail to say much at all and tend to nit pick various points. Some times this is welcome and we learn and that is good but much of the time it comes off as petty (like every thing is honkey dory with Richard Sternberg because he has his job) and when you fail to nit pick something it means you have no good nit picking to do so it is essentially confirmation when you cannot dispute it. And for that we welcome your silence. It is reassuring to know you are probably right.

  67. Are there two jerrys posting at UD? We had another writing this:

    I believe ID proponents should try to be squeaky clean when they criticize or propose scientific explanations in the cosmological and evolution debate so that there is no need for mea culpa’s.

    I don’t like having my sincerity questioned, especially by someone who puts words into my mouth. It hardly seems like being squeaky clean, and if you agree with this other jerry that IDers should be squeaky clean when criticizing scientific explanations, then I can’t see a reason why you shouldn’t also be squeaky clean in your other ID dealings.

    Now the good news, son of Galmod – you have my silence.

  68. Bob O’H,

    No there is one jerry. And I did say

    “tend to nit pick various points. Some times this is welcome and we learn and that is good”

    You have an advanced degree in biology (my assumption) and should be a fount of information. When great_ape commented here, it was a breath of fresh air because he believed in the power of neo Darwinism but was always willing to accept criticism of it as well as dish it out when the ID proponents went off the reservation and he corrected them.

    You should be able to fulfill the same function but there never seems to be a give and take. You continually post here but it is more like quick short comment tending to undermine small points in the discussion without any constructive criticism to move it forward. You should be capable of it. Otherwise why post here if all you seem to do is poke some minor holes in a comment from time to time.

    So I am goading you to step up and contribute. But things like denying the obvious that ID proponents are not being silenced is not a very helpful direction. A thoughtful discussion of the phenomena would be useful as opposed to saying we have one here but I am not sure what he believes. If he is a creationist or ID proponent, does it affect his performance. Is he anyway restricted in what he can teach? Is it a non issue? So I do not want your silence, I want your knowledge and experiences put to something useful here with open honest discussions.

  69. But things like denying the obvious that ID proponents are not being silenced is not a very helpful direction.

    I don’t believe that ID proponents are being silenced.

    You want an open honest discussion as long as I play by your rules and be dishonest. Sorry, there’s a problem there.

  70. Interesting thing about punctuated equilibrium: Isn’t that just saying we can’t imagine finding all the intermediate forms we would need? Isn’t it just “giving up” on gradualism — you know what was the real science at the time.

    Jerry is right. It’s not like researchers were working in the lab and found that monitored species changed faster than they thought. It’s that they didn’t find the evidence for their model, so they changed their model. Instead of waiting for evidence to prove their assumptions right, they thought they would look to evolution as the fossil record showed it. One of the problems not noticed by the people who use this “documentation” is that you cannot *prove* by your definition. Expected-gradualism-because-that’s-the-way-nature-usually-works is independent of the fossil record. If they had found more transitional forms as they looked, then that would be confirmed by another source, and it would have been pretty telling.

  71. Interesting thing about punctuated equilibrium: Isn’t that just saying we can’t imagine finding all the intermediate forms we would need? Isn’t it just “giving up” on gradualism — you know what was the real science at the time.

    No it isn’t. It was based on the observation that the rate of evolution changes – G.G. Simpson noted this (e.g. in his book “Tempo and Mode in Evolution”). IANAP (P=palaeontologist), but by understanding is that they often do see species remaining unchanged, followed by short bursts of change.

    When he was here, we had a discussion session with Stephen J. Gould, and one point he made was that the time scales that palaeontologists (like Gould) work on are much longer than the scales that we see when we observe wild populations. So, in a palaeontological blink of an eye a species can potentially change massively (e.g. in size). IOW gradualism can easily explain these bursts of change, because they are extremely slow bursts ecologically.


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