Behe's argument in Darwin Devolved

#41
Thanks!

I guess some of the 'junk' must consist of broken genes, but also some of it seems to code for RNA which isn't transcribed into proteins, but does something in its own right.

Michael Larkin is the biologist around here, so maybe he can take the discussion further.

David
Not so much, David -- I've often argued in the past that neoDarwinism is complete pants at explaining major changes in body form (macroevolution); it's probably only applicable at the microevolutionary level (say, genus or below). And frankly, I feel I've said pretty much everything I can say and would find it tedious to go over it all again.

One thing I will say is that so-called "junk" DNA is increasingly being found to be functional, as the ID people long ago conjectured, contrary to everything conventional Darwinists were saying -- and some of them are still trying to maintain. If dr.cyd will go to https://evolutionnews.org/ and do a search for "junk DNA", there are many articles on the subject.
 
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#42
One thing I will say is that so-called "junk" DNA is increasingly being found to be functional, as the ID people long ago conjectured,
Good point Michael. The language used in genetics actually disciplines along the lines of Exons and Introns.

Exon - a single gene, or sequence of 5' to 3' code which is expressed in its singular entirety inside mature RNA transcription (and then further as a colinear protein product).​
Bacteria are made up of almost entirely Exons. In Eukaryotes however, additional sequences of DNA are interspersed amidst the Exons, which interrupt the protein expressing Exons. These are called Introns (formerly called 'Junk DNA').
Intron - intervening sequences of DNA which are not conserved during the process of mature RNA transcription, and hence - do not express as colinear protein codes themselves.​

Even though Introns were called 'Non-coding' DNA (Wikipedia: Non-Coding DNA) at one time, I believe that this misconception is fading. Only mutations which occur inside an Exon can affect an expressed protein sequence, yes. However, mutation in Exons can affect processing of the RNA, and therefore allow or suppress expression of any specific protein.

So, to call this 'junk' or 'non-coding' DNA is a misnomer. Bricks, wood, pipes and wires do not make a house - a house is the intelligence which assembles those bricks, wood, pipes and wires into the precise arrangement to render them effective. Further then, none of these things make for a home.

There is actually a third set of DNA in our genome - call 'Non-sequenced' (stuff we have not cataloged yet) and if my information is up to date the percent of each falls out thusly:
  1. Exon - 2.5%
  2. Intron - 90%
  3. Non-sequenced - 7.5%
All comprised by our 3.42 billion base pairs.


 
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Bart V

straw materialist
Member
#43
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How much genetics do you know? I'd be interested if you can critique what I wrote - particularly the three different types of mutations.
Not enough to dissect the book myself, but just enough to understand the following criticisms to some degree:

A biochemist’s crusade to overturn evolution misrepresents theory and ignores evidence
More criticisms of Behe’s new ID book
Evolution unscathed: Darwin Devolves argues on weak reasoning that unguided evolution is a destructive force, incapable of innovation
Darwin Devolves: Behe Gets Polar Bear Evolution Very Wrong

This makes me wonder David, do you ever consult any other source than the Disco tute on evolution or biology?

You need to realise that I too used to believe in evolution by natural selection (RM+NS) before Lone Shaman and I had some long discussions. I think Behe's book is very strong evidence (along with many other pieces of information) that RM+NS could never have been primarily responsible for life on earth.
LS had long discussions with everybody, not always that courteous, if i remember correctly.
And he was a 9/11 truther, climate change denier, i believe an electric universe proponent, could not write more two sentences without a link to the ironically named "Evolutionnews" blog.
Oh and he left the forum in a huff over the moon landing conspiracy.
So in my book, not really a good reference.


If you listen to the latest video that I posted, you will discover that Behe doesn't know the origin of the intelligence, and a senior fellow of the Discovery Institute, David Berlinski, describes himself as an 'Atheist Jew', and just for good measure, I am not a member of any religion - certainly not a Christian.


David
Please David, spare me that piece of bad theater, the Discovery institute is a religious organization with deep pockets. As said often before, their goal is to replace science with religion, it is one of the organizations founding principles. ( interesting document for anybody who thinks the DI is a scientific organization)
 
#44
LS had long discussions with everybody, not always that courteous, if i remember correctly.
And he was a 9/11 truther, climate change denier, i believe an electric universe proponent, could not write more two sentences without a link to the ironically named "Evolutionnews" blog.
Oh and he left the forum in a huff over the moon landing conspiracy.
So in my book, not really a good reference.
Yes but he wasn't a 'reference', he pointed out things that perhaps I should have figured out for myself. The analogy would be if you did a calculation of some sort, showed it to someone, and they pointed out a maths error. You wouldn't need to trust the person who pointed that out!

The problem is, you think about science as something you read about and have to take the authors' word for. Some times it is like that, but I did a biology of cells course at university as part of my chemistry degree - I know some of this stuff, and what Behe says about the genetic consequences of natural selection makes perfect sense to me.

David
 

Bart V

straw materialist
Member
#45
Exactly what stands as "a good example of the discussion starting at a point far beyond what [you] can agree with?" The fact that DNA mutates, or talk of morphogenetic fields? Or of the 150 things contended or pondered here, every single one of them?
Morphogenetic fields is a good example, especially in this discussion.
There is no good evidence for it, yet it is used to shore up another bad idea.

Even the whole idea of ID has jumped the shark a bit for me, as i said before i see far more evolution in design, than design in evolution.

The whole concept rests on the idea that both intelligence, and design, originate in some supernatural process.
ID'ers tak that as a given, they never even question that.

They basically say: we come to design very complex things through a supernatural mind, evolution is a very complex process therefore, it also must come from a supernatural mind.

I see our minds, design, intelligence as natural processes.
Similar to evolution, in the sense that non intelligent agents, by blindly following rules, over a long time, can come to very complex behavior.
Also similar in the fact that both work very gradually.

Let us say that evolution uses genetics, and minds use memetics.
Probably not the correct use of the term 'memetics', but i want to use it to illustrate the differences.

Where genetics had the advantage of oodles of time, it has the draw back that it can not back out of a blind alley.
Memetics, on the other hand, is only around for a very short time, but it has the advantage of almost unlimited horizontal meme transfer, and it has the mind as a sort of simulation environment.
Where memetics are constrained by our fantasy, genetics doesn't care it has no concept of a bad idea, so whatever goes at the moment, goes.

So that is why even the basic idea of ID is already a bridge to far for me.
 
#46
So that is why even the basic idea of ID is already a bridge to far for me.
Gotcha Bart, and I am generally in that camp as well. I bristle at Supernatural Design being enforced upon us...

I consider the subject divided along five lines of research, all of which are independent avenues of inference and evidence:

Abiogenesis​
Familiation/Ordination​
Speciation (Darwinism)​
Epigenetics​
Human Acceleration​

I am a solid naturalist/Darwinist - but do not wear that as a defensive identity - as I cannot afford such an anchoring bias. I have not met a journalist nor science communicator yet, who really understood what evolution was, at a genomic level. So I keep some epoche on this issue as a result.

But science does not yet possess mature intelligence/predictive/mechanism on Ordination-Abiogenesis-Human Acceleration. Very scant (but promising) research has been done on the fifth, epigenetics. On those other four aside from Speciation, I am reluctant to make comment or bundle those isolate issues inside the layman word 'evolution'. On those four subjects I tread very lightly, because the danger of crafting a misleading question or boasting about what science has indeed concluded, is very stark. Darwin's excellent treatise (which I have in my ready-stash of books), only deals with one of these five questions.

Be careful of those who wear the police-badge of evolution, as license to equivocally dance among the other four disciplines, as if they are experts therein - they are not.

That's my take... and why I listen, with a skeptic's ear.
 

Bart V

straw materialist
Member
#47
Yes but he wasn't a 'reference', he pointed out things that perhaps I should have figured out for myself. The analogy would be if you did a calculation of some sort, showed it to someone, and they pointed out a maths error. You wouldn't need to trust the person who pointed that out!
Let us fit that analogy a bit better to the situation at hand:

Let's say the you are in a financial transaction with guy who points out the error in that calculation.
He has a lot to gain by you correcting your "error", because it is about the amount of money you have to pay him.
Yo are not a mathematician yourself. You do not trust the guy's way of calculating, after all calculating correctly is not his biggest motivation here .
So you go to a few academic mathematicians, they all say "this guy is full of shit, your original calculations were correct".

That is how i see the situation.

The problem is, you think about science as something you read about and have to take the authors' word for.
No i do not have to take their word for it, there is something as peer review.
The reverse is actually true, it is Behe who i have to believe at his word.

Some times it is like that, but I did a biology of cells course at university as part of my chemistry degree - I know some of this stuff, and what Behe says about the genetic consequences of natural selection makes perfect sense to me.

David
And with your knowledge about cell biology , what do you think about the critiques i provided?
 
#48
Yo are not a mathematician yourself.
No, but I do have some background in cell biology, as I said. There is nothing really complicated in what Behe has pointed out. I have looked for discussions in which his argument is faulted, and so far I haven't found one. Let me know if you do.

The standard way modern science handles these situations is to ignore information they don't like, or resort to name calling! It is pathetic really.

David
 
#49
Here's a quite good article that explains introns and "junk" ("non-coding") DNA, etc. Note that the author never mentions the fact that ID people were the first to conjecture that most, if not all, DNA would turn out to have a function in cells. And why did they do that? Because they believed an intelligent designer wouldn't waste 97% of the genome on "junk". Say what you like about ID, call IDers puerile names all you want, but whether or not they're right in their belief in an intelligent designer, they got the prediction right and stuck to it in the face of incredible obduracy by the neoDarwinists.

The latter, of course, will never admit this. Shame on them.
 
#50
Here’s a good article. My understanding (happy to be corrected) is that It seems that the overall importance genes is becoming less and less obvious as time goes. We were promised a complete understanding and blueprint to emerge regarding human physiology, anatomy, and even psychology through these studies on genes. After billions of dollars and Thousands of hours of research, it seems that genes do one thing so far as can be recently seen. They make proteins. There’s nothing even showing how a gene might even direct THE SHAPE of a protein, let alone construct a physiological organism with full sentience. It’s such a leap. Yet it’s a full on religious belief that it all comes down to genes. People have this idea that “true” means “taught in all the main universities.” As if these ideas are freed from bias and self-massaging groupthink and are purely the result of evidence.

Genetic studies are important, but it seems that their significance was severely overstated. Yet it’s the mechanism that materialistic mainstream really has to hold onto. There’s too much at stake in this point of the game. I’ve posted a good related article below.

http://m.nautil.us/issue/68/context/its-the-end-of-the-gene-as-we-know-it
 
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#51
Here’s a good article. My understanding (happy to be corrected) is that It seems that the overall importance genes is becoming less and less obvious as time goes. We were promised a complete understanding and blueprint to emerge regarding human physiology, anatomy, and even psychology through these studies on genes. After billions of dollars and Thousands of hours of research, it seems that genes do one thing so far as can be recently seen. They make proteins. There’s nothing even showing how a gene might even direct THE SHAPE of a protein, let alone construct a physiological organism with full sentience. It’s such a leap. Yet it’s a full on religious belief that it all comes down to genes. People have this idea that “true” means “taught in all the main universities.” As if these ideas are freed from bias and self-massaging groupthink and are purely the result of evidence.

Genetic studies are important, but it seems that their significance was severely overstated. Yet it’s the mechanism that materialistic mainstream really has to hold onto. There’s too much at stake in this point of the game. I’ve posted a good related article below.

http://m.nautil.us/issue/68/context/its-the-end-of-the-gene-as-we-know-it
That is a great find, and I wonder if you should copy it to a new thread in the "Why Science is Wrong" section of the forum so that it can be discussed independently of this discussion.

David
 

Bart V

straw materialist
Member
#53
No, but I do have some background in cell biology, as I said. There is nothing really complicated in what Behe has pointed out. I have looked for discussions in which his argument is faulted, and so far I haven't found one. Let me know if you do.
I have provided you several in a previous post:

A biochemist’s crusade to overturn evolution misrepresents theory and ignores evidence
More criticisms of Behe’s new ID book
Evolution unscathed: Darwin Devolves argues on weak reasoning that unguided evolution is a destructive force, incapable of innovation
Darwin Devolves: Behe Gets Polar Bear Evolution Very Wrong

Have you looked at any of them?
 
#54
Probably the two best critiques from that material. (Lents, Swamidass, et. al.)

"Behe asserts that new functions only arise through “purposeful design” of new genetic information, a claim that cannot be tested. By contrast, modern evolutionary theory provides a coherent set of processes—mutation, recombination, drift, and selection—that can be observed in the laboratory and modeled mathematically and are consistent with the fossil record and comparative genomics."​
A bit of equivocation and ambiguity employed twice here - the phrase, correctly worded should read:

"Behe asserts that novel and context specific advantageous morphological ergodicity, comprising a homogeneity of deleterious genetic functional information and interdependencies, serve ordination/familiation in a way that suggests intent cannot be ruled out of the set of Ockhham's Razor plurality, a claim that cannot be tested. (Note, this is not a 'claim' rather a philosophical argument, if they had framed it correctly). By contrast, modern evolutionary theory provides a coherent set of processes - mutation, recombination, drift, and selection - that can be observed in the laboratory and modeled mathematically to inductively predict the likely possibility of speciation by these means alone, and therefore would be consistent with part of the fossil record and comparative genomics.​
After reading Behe' book slowly over the last month, they have pejoratively and inaccurately spun Behe's contention in the first half of the quote, and then further misrepresented/exaggerated both the footprint and inference of what science has accomplished in terms of evolutionary modeling to date. In addition, one does not 'model mathematically', evolution. As a person who uses modeling and forecasting packages professionally, and has developed his own software for such activity - I chuckle at this statement. Mathematics is not sufficient to be considered congruent with 'modeling' - especially when it comes to the complex feedback, inter-dependencies and arrivals/constraints of genomic expression/allele change.

They need to separate in their minds, what Behe 'believes' as distinct from what he is scientifically requesting (is not a 'claim')... these are not the same thing and should not be conflated.

And further then, (Jerry Coyne)

Misunderstanding #3: Behe frequently speaks as though natural selection (which he often calls Darwinism) is the only evolutionary force. In reality, natural selection is joined by genetic drift, neutral theory, exaptation, gene flow, sexual selection, hybridization, punctuated equilibrium, frequency-dependent selection, and dozens of other forces. Behe constantly repeats his refrain that natural selection cannot account for everything we see in nature. Yeah, we know. And we’ve known that for a very long time.​
I agree with this statement - although, this is a disputation (not refutation) based on semantics and not epistemology. If Coyne has a word which encompasses a structured model assigning objective constrains from each of the items in blue (aside from the imprecise term 'evolution') - he needs to suggest that name. I am sure that Behe would employ it. Coyne skips over the fact that we do not have a model which explains ordination in terms of "genetic drift, neutral theory, exaptation, gene flow, sexual selection, hybridization, punctuated equilibrium (this is not a model input structure nor constraint, rather an ergodicity description), frequency-dependent selection, and dozens of other forces."

These are just a bunch of nonequivalent terms thrown out as a method of plural arguing (ingens vanitatum rhetoric to sound intimidating).

While I am on the side of Lentz and Coyne in whatever it is Coyne calls his long list of stuff highlighted in blue (and chose to not name it), my concerns are:

1. These are ad hominem condemning quips, crafted to sound as if they impact inference to a much greater degree than they actually do.
2. They are passing off inductive model study as if it is deductive model study - and hoping the reader does not know the difference.
3. There is too much emotion and bias wound up in these authors' articles.
4. The best they have to offer is intimidating terminology - not really that ethical nor insightful from a scientific standpoint. It sounds impressive to a science enthusiast.
5. They are misrepresenting the essence of Behe's contention (not 'claim') - that intent is in the PLURALITY not in the PROOF... he is asking that this model be tested - not insisting that it has been proven.
6. They are too friggin obsessed with his religious backing... Yes, we all get this (my god I may go out of my mind with boredom of this) - get over it and address the actual hypothesis here - and its critical path:
Has Ockham's Razor been surpassed or not? If they cannot answer (nor even discern) that question - then my trust level drops enormously. This is the ethical critical path of this issue.​

Bottom line, while Behe's book carries a lot of religious inertia, no doubt, I also don't need propaganda coming from the other direction. I need calm and fair representation of an opposing sponsorship; along with unbiased actual MODELS which serve ergodicity and theory of constrains sufficiently to explain ordination, and for that matter human acceleration.

That has not been done, and I get unsettled when allies boast in implication that it has been. I am debating whether or not intent is in the set of plurality on ordination and human acceleration - I have not arrived a that conclusion yet. But I would not see these rhetoricians as qualified to help me in that determination.

My take...

Science is the process of being found wrong - not seeking confirming suggestion that one was possibly right...
 
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Bart V

straw materialist
Member
#55
Bottom line, I don't need propaganda just in the other direction. I need calm and fair representation of an opposing sponsorship; along with unbiased actual MODELS which serve ergodicity and theory of constrains sufficiently to explain ordination, and for that matter human acceleration.
What do you mean with this, especially the part i bolded, i know the words, but i never have seen them used in this context.
 
#56
What do you mean with this, especially the part i bolded, i know the words, but i never have seen them used in this context.
It was derived from my previous post in this thread. To wit:

I consider the subject divided along five lines of research, all of which are independent avenues of inference and evidence:
Abiogenesis
Familiation/Ordination
Speciation (Darwinism)
Epigenetics
Human Acceleration

I am a solid naturalist/Darwinist - but do not wear that as a defensive identity - as I cannot afford such an anchoring bias when it comes to the other four sub-disciplines.

Ohhh and 'modeling for ergodicity' is a model explaining past outcomes, as opposed to a forecasting or ex ante model, which is risking projections of the future...
 
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#57
Bart, watch the video which I posted above - Behe isn't a Christian, and doesn't sound as if he has any definite belief. Like you, I suppose, I would count that to his credit, but you manage to ignore this fact!

David
 
#58

Hi David
This is a very succinct dissertation by Dr Mae-Wan Ho on the social consequences of Darwin's Theory.

I wish I could remember the name of the (young male) genetic scientist who describes how our thoughts, influenced by our experiential environment, can change our DNA, in one of those self-endorsing loops. He seemed to imply that our DNA can change far more rapidly than by the slow pace of mutation or gradual evolution. An example is that babies in utero preparing for birth in a high altitude are born perfectly able to breathe in that environment. In fact it may be that evolution happens at many different rates, and complex thought, being a very human trait, has made our evolution happen faster than other animals.

I haven't read Behe, and this has been an interesting debate, although TES's dissertations are over my head, requiring more time and study for me to slowly understand. I'm not sure if my comment is relevant, but what do you think?

Alice
 
#59
Notes on evolution versus intent.

Intent is The Necessary Alternative - and I want it studied, despite being a proponent of natural selection. Natural selection is my scientific preference, however it is NOT my religion - it too must stand accountable under science. It does not get a free pass, just because a lot of science enthusiasts and pretend skeptics believe it or say it is so.

1. The critical path construct here is 'Detection of Intent' - not creation, nor intelligent design (those are red herring arguments) - as 'intent' does not in the immediate term pertain whatsoever as to where the intent was derived. We actually do not care where the intent came from, only that it is observed as present. This is our incremental task of science at this moment in time. All subsequent questions are moot right now.​
2. There is no Null Hypothesis in evolution/intent based explanatory models - as this is a Dual-Proof hypothesis reduction. The reason for this is because we are comparing a stochastic-in-inception (purely non-intent) model, to a model which features intent, at least in part. If we are to prove a pure model, then our epistemology must be 100% in order to prove that purity.​
Poker is an example of Dual-Proof Model (No Null Hypothesis - each party is both innocent as well as guilty)​
A. If you are going to accuse someone of cheating (intent) - you must bring deductive conclusive (not inductive suggestive, such as "He wins too much!") proof of such presence of intent. You must find the Ace up someone's sleeve and show everyone this cheat, in the moment.​
B. If you are going to be the dealer (make a claim to stochasticity) - this cannot be assumed. You must bring deductive conclusive (not inductive suggestive) proof of such presence of stochasticity. You must demonstrate 100% of your model and domain of argument, before all participants (shuffle the deck). Each participant must also demonstrate their stochasticity as well - no sleeves at the table, no hands under the table, no holding the cards in a fan, etc.​
Both of these are 'proofs'. Both are mandatory - because we bear the simultaneous burden of necessity to falsify the notion of Intent (B) as well as prove it (A).​
So, no party can sit on the luxury of declaring their position to be the Null Hypothesis. No party or idea is allowed to 'be assumed as innocent until proved guilty'. Each party is both innocent as well as guilty.

This might also be called 'trust everyone, but cut the deck'.

If I dealt a hand of Texas Hold'em and 99.9% of the game was stochastic and fair, save for ONE card, an Ace which is taped under the table for one of the players - no matter how much inductive evidence I may show, that the game was not fixed - the mere presence of that one Ace serves to falsify the contention of stochasticity - no matter how much evidence to the contrary I proved up and to that point.

Stochasticity cannot be the null hypothesis - as this is the habit of a corrupt house.

So for this reason - Behe's hypothesis of detecting intent MUST BE RESEARCHED, as the necessary alternative. It cannot be dismissed by mere:

skepticism (see Demarcation of Skepticism)​
politics​
religion​
inductive study​
abductive doctrine​
panduction​
propaganda​
preference​
disdain​
personal authority​
club authority​
ad populum
ad consensus
Each of the above, fails the test of demarcation of science in this particular case. The house cannot be ASSUMED to be honest and 100% disclosed - it must prove this case. And it must prove this case inside 100% of all 5 domains (below) - by deductive proof of absence of intent (modus absens) - no sleeve concealed, no hands under the table. 100% of cards exposed and visible.

Abiogenesis​
Familiation/Ordination​
Speciation (Darwinism)​
Epigenetics​
Human Acceleration​

I sincerely hate that reality - but sadly that is the task at hand.

 
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#60
Bart, watch the video which I posted above - Behe isn't a Christian, and doesn't sound as if he has any definite belief. Like you, I suppose, I would count that to his credit, but you manage to ignore this fact!

David
I'm pretty sure Behe is a catholic and not an evangelical or a fundamentalist. He is one of the few at TDI who is not actively or covertly promoting a religious agenda. imho. I appreciate your explication of his ideas!
Which video are you referng to?
 
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