Darwin’s junk science

One of our readers, Russell, is studying Darwin’s On the Origin of Species, and finding it less than compelling:

I’m halfway through “On the Origin of Species” So far, it’s been junk science. I’m serious, multiple times now he’s said something along of the lines of “I totally have super-solid proof, but I don’t have room in the book to share it. Any of it. Ever. But believe me, it’s totes awesome.” And “Let’s say evolution could possibly do X.” Then a few sentences later, “Since evolution does X, it does Y.” No proof offered, nothing but assertions and denial of actual data.

So far, he’s done one experiment with bees, gave up in the middle of it, and then declared it was a success!

How this became as popular as it did baffles me. How it became a cornerstone of scientific thought confuses me to no end.

If people, especially scientists, actually read his book with the same skepticism they use for just about anything else, I’m sure they’d toss out Darwin’s evolution and start over.

For me, as a believing Christian, Darwin’s book has only strengthen my conviction that the Bible’s account of creation is more accurate in description than the theory of evolution.

This is why you should always go to the source, and not take anyone’s word for what an author said or meant.

As for why the book became so popular, my guess is that it’s mostly to do with Thomas Huxley, aka Darwin’s Bulldog. Huxley latched onto Darwinian evolution as a way to undermine Christianity, even though he was aware of its scientific shortcomings. It’d be difficult to quantify, but he was at least modestly successful in that regard. Huxley’s most profound achievement, however, was to undermine scientific advancement in the field of biology and to erode public trust in science in general. If he had known that this would be the cost of attacking Christianity, I wonder if he still would have promoted Darwin’s idea.

 

32 thoughts on “Darwin’s junk science

  1. Thanks!

    “Huxley’s most profound achievement, however, was to undermine scientific advancement in the field of biology and to erode public trust in science in general.”

    It turned science from Bacon’s “Novum Organum” (which I have read, top notch book, Bacon’s foundation is essential to understanding the scientific method) to Darwin’s Just-so Stories, mistakenly billed as science.

    Way to go, Huxley.

  2. I’ve sometimes thought people who say that faith in Christianity should be grounds for being drummed out of academia are being too harsh, but reading some of the nonsense on this web site makes me reconsider that. The saying that “religion stops a thinking mind” couldn’t be more apparent.

    You’re a scientist only insofar as it doesn’t conflict with your Christianity, and when it does, and you’re forced to choose one or the other, you throw science out the window–along with objectivity, evidence-based reasoning, and everything else that goes along with it. I can only wonder how often and in what ways you’ve tailored your science to suit your irrational religious beliefs.

  3. I’ve sometimes thought people who say that faith in Christianity should be grounds for being drummed out of academia are being too harsh, but reading some of the nonsense on this web site makes me reconsider that.

    So, you were fine with Christians in academia as long as they kept their mouths shut about their beliefs, and made no attempt to reconcile them with modern science.

    As for your claims, provide examples. On what basis do you assert that I “throw science out the window–along with objectivity, evidence-based reasoning, and everything else that goes along with it”? In what way are my beliefs “irrational”?

  4. I have never read “On the origin of species” so I don’t know how much scientific evidence Darwin provides for his theory but so what if he doesn’t. Plenty of other scientists over the last 150 years have provided it from the fossil record, biogeography, ERVS, junk DNA, comparative anatomy, population genetics, chromosome 2 fusion, DNA similarities and the list goes on.

  5. “I don’t know how much scientific evidence Darwin provides for his theory”

    So far, nothing.

    “so what if he doesn’t.”

    Are you serious? Look, this isn’t hard. If you propose a revolutionary way of looking at the world, you best have your ducks in a row. I really need to finish the book, but up to the halfway point, Darwin hasn’t at all. Nothing. Nada. Zilch. It has been Just So stories as to put Kipling to shame and leaps of logic so astounding that mountain goats and Cirque du Soleil are jealous.

    Remember the whole extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence? Seems not to be a big deal when it comes to Saint Darwin.

    “Plenty of other scientists over the last 150 years have provided it ”

    No, they haven’t. That’s the dirty secret. Darwinism requires slow changes over vast amount of time leaving a trail of intermediate forms from the Hadean eon until today from one form to the next.

    The speed of change isn’t predictable or consistent. There isn’t enough time in the freaking universe to cover the combinations needed. There aren’t intermediate forms in the fossil record. When a species changes is ‘proven’ they follow Darwin’s example of mixing the terms ‘breeds’, ‘varieties’, ‘intermediate forms’, and ‘species’ around interchangeably while not clearly defining what a species is or how it differs from breeds, varieties or intermediate forms. Changing, in a lab, one form of bacteria into another isn’t Darwinian evolution.

    Leading edge biology, unless you don’t count the Altenberg 16 as leading edge evolutionary theorists, discarded Darwinism and replaced it with their own Just So stories.

    One of the major problems with Darwinism, and missed by Darwin, is that at the core of it, it’s a reductive selection strategy. That is, it doesn’t produce new information in the genome and propagates that, instead it can only remove poor preforming genes.

    Another is that it has no predictive ability. Darwinism predicts everything and nothing. It cannot be falsified. Anything that cannot be falsified, as per Popper, cannot be considered empirical science.

    Whatever empirical evidence accrued over the years has nothing to do with supporting Darwinism, despite the intentions to do so. We’re in the middle of another Ptolemy era. Will we see another Copernicus in our lifetimes is my question.

  6. “The speed of change isn’t predictable or consistent. There isn’t enough time in the freaking universe to cover the combinations needed. There aren’t intermediate forms in the fossil record. When a species changes is ‘proven’ they follow Darwin’s example of mixing the terms ‘breeds’, ‘varieties’, ‘intermediate forms’, and ‘species’ around interchangeably while not clearly defining what a species is or how it differs from breeds, varieties or intermediate forms. Changing, in a lab, one form of bacteria into another isn’t Darwinian evolution.”

    You can’t expect to find a fossil of every single organism that has ever lived. We may not have a complete puzzle but we have enough pieces in place to deduce what happened. We do have a general pattern that shows simple organisms to more complex over time. This is what the fossil record shows. It is best explained by common descent unless you think they appeared out of nowhere.

    “That is, it doesn’t produce new information in the genome and propagates that, instead it can only remove poor preforming genes.”

    We have whole gene duplication. This shows that there are new genes that can be made that weren’t there before. We also have ORFan genes. This is new information that was made too. Mutations is a proven fact. When the genes are duplicated or created, they don’t copy 100% correctly and we get a new feature. Nature then selects the best ones to move on.

    “Another is that it has no predictive ability. Darwinism predicts everything and nothing. It cannot be falsified. Anything that cannot be falsified, as per Popper, cannot be considered empirical science.”

    It predicted Tiktaalik. I know about the earlier tetropod footprints but that still doesn’t negate the fact that the theory predicted where to find this fossil. It predicted the chromsome 2 fusion. Heck even Darwin postulated that we have some ancestry with apes when he said his bit about “having a monkey’s mind”. We have found out that we share 98% of our genes with the monkeys so he got it right. Find me a fossil that is so out of place that it baffles the mind and that would be a good start.

    “Whatever empirical evidence accrued over the years has nothing to do with supporting Darwinism, despite the intentions to do so. We’re in the middle of another Ptolemy era. Will we see another Copernicus in our lifetimes is my question.”

    And yet you haven’t addressed any of the evidences I provided, let alone refuted. No YEC stuff either please.

  7. jlafan2001: No YEC stuff either please.

    This is not a YEC site, and you won’t find many commenters here relying on YE arguments. Nevertheless, you’re not in a position to dictate to regular readers how they are to respond to you.

  8. Reading comprehension isn’t your strong suit, is it?

    “You can’t expect to find a fossil of every single organism that has ever lived.”

    Never said that.

    “We may not have a complete puzzle but we have enough pieces in place to deduce what happened.”

    No, we don’t. Making up inferences between organism A and B isn’t science. It’s making up stuff.

    “We do have a general pattern that shows simple organisms to more complex over time.”

    No, we have a general pattern showing complex organisms show up out of the blue. Some stick around for awhile then are gone, others are still with us, unchanged, such as the alligator and shark.

    “This is what the fossil record shows. It is best explained by common descent unless you think they appeared out of nowhere.”

    But they do show up out of nowhere according the fossil record. Common descent isn’t science, it’s just so stories. You do understand the difference between a historical model and a predictive model?

    “Mutations is a proven fact.”

    You really have no idea what I’m talking about. I focused on Darwin’s theory, which is actively hostile to anything that isn’t reductionist.

    “It predicted Tiktaalik. ”

    Pfft. “Something somewhere might be like this, sort of, over here, maybe. Because reasons.” Yes, I am paraphrasing. You’re going to misunderstand what I just wrote. Darwinism cannot predict the speed of change or the types of changes because it predicts everything and nothing. 2008, the evolutionists were claiming it was a evolutionary return to simpler form. Prior, it was an intermediate form. Subsequently, evolutionists are suggesting they might be an evolutionary dead end. Who knows?! Not Darwinists, that’s for sure, because the theory lacks the ability to make predictions.

    “Find me a fossil that is so out of place that it baffles the mind and that would be a good start.”

    You want the pre-Cambrian rabbit, don’t you? So on one hand you defend the fossil record to be incomplete, on the other you want a fossil, already found, that baffles you.

    Very well, I shall make an attempt to satisfy your incoherent demands: the Cambrian explosion. It was such a big deal it was hidden for years, then, when it came to light, they had to come up with a retrograde theory, Punctured Equilibrium, to account for it.

    But you’re going to reject that because Darwinism cannot be falsified.

    “And yet you haven’t addressed any of the evidences I provided, let alone refuted. No YEC stuff either please.”

    You rattled off terms. That isn’t evidence. So far, you haven’t evinced understanding of those terms. You haven’t understood a single point in my comment. You blithely skipped over the Altenberg 16’s positions, which means you have no idea who they are or the significance of them. You flat out ignored Popper. And now you demand two things from me: to counter evidence you haven’t supplied, and not use YEC “stuff”. At no point have I invoked YEC. To the best of my knowledge, the earth is 4.54 ± 0.05 billion years old. So you’re assuming something without evidence and didn’t bothering to ask but went straight ahead and jumped to conclusions. Not only that, you are arguing out of ignorance, since you admitted to not having read Darwin’s book.

    If you can’t address what I’ve actually written, this isn’t going anywhere. It probably won’t anyway, anyone who’s a true believer and yet is ignorant of the founder’s book isn’t going to be swayed by dialectic.

    TL;DR: You’re too short for this ride. You’re going to keep ignoring and misconstruing what I’ve written. You’re self admittedly ignorant of Darwin’s book and yet you are arguing for it against someone who is halfway through it.

  9. So, I get chastised for not wanting YEC evidence but Russel gets away with all the insults. Interesting. Notice that not one of my comments was a personal attack. All I did was layout the evidence for evolution that was not in Darwin’s book. Evidence that he didn’t know about but that support his theory. This evidence still hasn’t been seriously addressed but has been deflected with insults. If you don’t find the evidence compelling then that’s your decision.

    “No, we have a general pattern showing complex organisms show up out of the blue. Some stick around for awhile then are gone, others are still with us, unchanged, such as the alligator and shark.”

    “But they do show up out of nowhere according the fossil record. Common descent isn’t science, it’s just so stories. You do understand the difference between a historical model and a predictive model?”

    I would love to see your evidence and testable hypothesis on how animals came out of nowhere like the fossil record shows, as you claim. If that’s not what you believe and you don’t accept common descent then where did all the lifeforms come from?

    “You really have no idea what I’m talking about. I focused on Darwin’s theory, which is actively hostile to anything that isn’t reductionist.”

    Darwin’s theory involved natural selection acting on random variation. Today, we know that the variation takes on the form of mutations.

    “You want the pre-Cambrian rabbit, don’t you? So on one hand you defend the fossil record to be incomplete, on the other you want a fossil, already found, that baffles you.”

    Why can’t I claim the fossil record is incomplete but ask for an example of a fossil out of place with what we have found so far? Even though the fossil record is incomplete, it still shows a pattern of simple to complex. It would be turned upside down if we found fossils in no pattern all. If we found a fossil that was complex millions of years older than simpler lifeforms then there would be a serious question about it.

    “Very well, I shall make an attempt to satisfy your incoherent demands: the Cambrian explosion. It was such a big deal it was hidden for years, then, when it came to light, they had to come up with a retrograde theory, Punctured Equilibrium, to account for it.”

    So you are going to let one event dictate the rest of the fossil record? This doesn’t have any bearing on other fossils like all the transitions from lizard to mammal or lizard to bird.

    “You rattled off terms. That isn’t evidence. So far, you haven’t evinced understanding of those terms. You haven’t understood a single point in my comment. You blithely skipped over the Altenberg 16’s positions, which means you have no idea who they are or the significance of them. You flat out ignored Popper.”

    If what I listed is not evidence to you then nothing that I present will be considered evidence. You have written it all off. How can you say I don’t understand those terms when you haven’t even addressed them? I know about the Altenberg 16 but they have nothing to do with the evidence I presented to you. I give you a list of evidence to go over and you reply with “what about the Altenberg 16?”

    I can only guess you have no answers and hence the insults and deflection.

  10. So, I get chastised for not wanting YEC evidence but Russel gets away with all the insults.

    You did not get chastised for not wanting YEC evidence. You got chastised for demanding what type of evidence is and is not acceptable from one of my regular readers whose observations inspired this post. You are of course free to accept or reject whatever evidence you want, but Russell will make whatever types of arguments he pleases.

    And Russell did not insult you; he pointed out that you are not demonstrating the intellectual capacity to engage in debate about the evidence. I know very little about biology, and even I can tell that your knowledge of this subject is incomplete and decades out of date.

    You are welcome to continue debating here; just understand that you will be held to a higher standard for evidence and logic than you are probably used to.

  11. Dr. Salviander, I am open to correction. If my evidence is out of date then I ask that you show me how and where? The last time I checked ERVs, for example, was very good evidence of common descent.

    So far, there hasn’t been a debate about the evidence. Russel hasn’t engaged in any of it. There has been no counter evidence to what I presented. We haven’t made it past the fossil record yet. I think asking the question of how lifeforms arose is valid. If not common descent or de novo, then what and how did they come about?

    So far, all I’m getting is that I’m wrong without actually showing me where.

  12. “So, I get chastised for not wanting YEC evidence but Russel gets away with all the insults.”

    No. You got called on the carpet for dictating what you would find acceptable, for assuming I was a YEC defender, for not bothering to confirm my YEC position, and for already rejecting potential evidence you have not seen nor considered due to your hasty genetic fallacy.

    “Interesting. Notice that not one of my comments was a personal attack.”

    Neither are mine. If you cannot tell the difference between a dialectic approach, observation, and rhetoric, you are going to have a hard time.

    “All I did was layout the evidence”

    No, you did not. You threw terms out. That is not the same as presenting evidence. You didn’t make a logical argument of any sort and you ignored everything I’ve said.

    “I would love to see your evidence and testable hypothesis on how animals came out of nowhere like the fossil record shows, as you claim.”

    Do you understand the difference between a historical model and a predictive model?

    “Darwin’s theory involved natural selection acting on random variation.“

    Chapter Two: “We have also what are called monstrosities; but they graduate into varieties. By a monstrosity I presume is meant some considerable deviation of structure in one part, either injurious to or not useful to the species, and not generally propagated. Some authors use the term ‘variation’ in a technical sense, as implying a modification directly due to the physical conditions of life; and ‘variations’ in this sense are supposed not to be inherited.”

    The idea of random mutation wasn’t an idea during his time since genetic theory didn’t exist. As you can see from this passage his theory is reductionist in nature and didn’t consider ‘monstrosities’ aka ‘variation’ to be very important.

    “Why can’t I claim the fossil record is incomplete but ask for an example of a fossil out of place with what we have found so far?”

    I see you ignored the Cambrian explosion for this point. And you can’t follow a logical chain. You’re ignoring what is there and demanding something which you’ve already decided can’t exist from a record that is, by all standards, insufficient. And you’ve moved the goalposts, your original statement was: “Find me a fossil that is so out of place that it baffles the mind and that would be a good start.”

    Let’s try a different approach. Assume fossils are set A. All found fossils are subset of A, call it B. You want a fossil that that’s out of place. Such a fossil could exist in A, but not necessarily in B.

    As B stands, it cannot produce anything ~B subset A.

    I contend that the fossil record B does have such a thing, a whole chunk called the Cambrian Explosion. No common descent. Not enough time for Darwinian changes or random mutations. Not explainable by Darwin or Neo-Darwinism or modern theories.

    “So you are going to let one event dictate the rest of the fossil record?”

    You are living up to my predictions even better than I had hoped!

    That’s a driving force behind scientific theory, one event can turn everything on its ear and inside out. The Cambrian explosion is a major problem for Darwinism. It was ignored, then evolutionists came up with a retrograde theory to account for it. You continue to ignore or misconstrue what I’ve written.

    “This doesn’t have any bearing on other fossils like all the transitions from lizard to mammal or lizard to bird.”

    Of course it does! The Cambrian explosion cannot be predicted by Darwinism, which means supposed intermediate forms are suspect from the get go because they could easily been caused by the same mechanism as what happened in the Cambrian.

    “If what I listed is not evidence to you then nothing that I present will be considered evidence.”

    It isn’t evidence. You haven’t presented an argument, either of the dialectical or rhetorical variety. Listing terms isn’t an argument or evidence.

    “I know about the Altenberg 16 but they have nothing to do with the evidence I presented to you.“

    It’s clear you don’t understand the impact of them, then. Their positions overturn traditional Darwinism point by point. Do you know what came out of their meeting?

    “I give you a list of evidence to go over and you reply with ‘what about the Altenberg 16?’”

    Why not? Let me repeat, you haven’t made an argument. You believe a list of terms is equivalent to evidence. Reference something in passing seems to be something you like, so why do you reject a reference to them from me?

    “I can only guess you have no answers and hence the insults and deflection.”

    Noting observable facts is not an insult. Your inability to grasp or follow an argument is not a deflection on my part.

    “If my evidence is out of date then I ask that you show me how and where?“

    I already did. The Altenberg 16 meeting and results.

    You really are missing my point here. Let me try again. Darwin’s book is junk science. He routinely assumes points have been proven. He routinely denies the reader of his evidence. He doesn’t use the scientific method beyond observation. Anything built off of such shaky ground is the same as building models to help support Ptolemy. Along the way, leading edge biologists have grasped that and slowly dropped Darwin’s original theory, but kept the name. Today’s leading edge evolutionists have abandoned his theory in whole due to the Altenberg 16 meeting and results.

    Let me expound on a few points.

    He routinely assumes points have been proven.
    Presented as a ’may be’ without evidence: “It may be said that natural selection is daily and hourly scrutinising, throughout the world, every variation, even the slightest; rejecting that which is bad, preserving and adding up all that is good; silently and insensibly working, whenever and wherever opportunity offers, at the improvement of each organic being in relation to its organic and inorganic conditions of life.“
    Assumes first is proven, thus a conclusion: “Hence I can see no reason to doubt that natural selection might be most effective”
    Again: “So, conversely, modifications in the adult will probably often affect the structure of the larva”
    Changes from ‘probably’ to ‘will’ without evidence: “Natural selection will modify the structure of the young in relation to the parent, and of the parent in relation to the young.”
    He references his own statements as ‘evidence’: “We have evidence of this, in the facts given in the second chapter, showing that it is the common species which afford the greatest number of recorded varieties, or incipient species.”
    He routinely denies the reader of his evidence.
    “It is hopeless to attempt to convince any one of the truth of this proposition without giving the long array of facts which I have collected, and which cannot possibly be here introduced.”
    “I have collected a long list of such cases; but here, as before, I lie under a great disadvantage in not being able to give them.”
    “Here, as on other occasions, I lie under a heavy disadvantage, for out of the many striking cases which I have collected, I can give only one or two instances”
    He doesn’t use the scientific method beyond observation. So far, he attempt one experiment with bees. Here are the highlights.
    “By such modifications of instincts in themselves not very wonderful,–hardly more wonderful than those which guide a bird to make its nest,–I believe that the hive-bee has acquired, through natural selection, her inimitable architectural powers.”
    “But this theory can be tested by experiment.”
    “and I suspect that the bees in such cases stand in the opposed cells and push and bend the ductile and warm wax (which as I have tried is easily done) into its proper intermediate plane, and thus flatten it.”
    “Some of these statements differ from those made by the justly celebrated elder Huber, but I am convinced of their accuracy; and if I had space, I could show that they are conformable with my theory.” — He stopped here. That’s it. Had theory, tried to set up an experiment, ran out of space, and declared it to be successful.
    This also applies to point 2: “This capacity in bees of laying down under certain circumstances a rough wall in its proper place between two just-commenced cells, is important, as it bears on a fact, which seems at first quite subversive of the foregoing theory; namely, that the cells on the extreme margin of wasp-combs are sometimes strictly hexagonal; but I have not space here to enter on this subject.” He admits his theory has a major flaw, but he won’t address it.

    My predictions at this point are you will continue to harp on your hurt feelings. You will ignore or misconstrue the majority of what I’ve said. You will fail to present an argument. You will continue to prove you’re too short for this ride.

    You can change all of my predictions, of course. It’s up to you.

  13. OK. Let me give the example of ERV’s. They are viruses that insert themselves randomly in the host DNA. When the DNA replicates so does the segments of the virus that was inserted. When these viruses are inserted in the sperm or egg cells, they are passed on to the offspring. We find these randomly inserted viruses in the same spot between humans and chimps (not sure about other mammals at this point). What are the chances that two species would have these in the same random spots if they were not related? The best answer is that our ape-like common ancestor contracted this virus and it was passed on to subsequent generations until the split between humans and chimps.

  14. “What are the chances that two species would have these in the same random spots if they were not related? The best answer is that our ape-like common ancestor contracted this virus and it was passed on to subsequent generations until the split between humans and chimps.”

    Much better, but I’m not interested in debating Ptolemy-level retrograde models. Are you going to answer any of my questions?

    I know you are going to see this as deflection, but it’s not and I’ll explain why. You’re focused on some observed facts. Very good. These facts are interesting. Without a doubt. But until the assumed theories can account for far more than this, then we are arguing why Mars reverses its path around the Earth and how best to model that.

    I have no theories why the virus works that way, only a few, assuredly halfbaked, ideas. It’s not my wheelhouse. My current interest lies with Darwin’s “Origin of Species” and what a hack job it’s been.

    But I can say being related isn’t an ironclad case for common descent. Whatever assembled Homo sapiens and Pan troglodytes could have easily been using a standardized set of DNA, just as one example, much like a Lego set or reusable code. Common descent has been asserted by inductive reasoning. A powerful tool, to be sure, to help the theory along, but without the ability to falsify the theory, as per Popper, it’s not empirical science. Inductive reasoning has limits, which are ignored in favor of “Just So” stories as done by Darwin.

    From his book: “We may imagine that the early progenitor of the ostrich had habits like those of a bustard, and that as natural selection increased in successive generations the size and weight of its body, its legs were used more, and its wings less, until they became incapable of flight.”

    That’s a “Just So” story. No experimentation, no falsification, nothing but his imagination.

    I think you are assuming that I have a replacement theory for Darwinism. I don’t, I’m just noting that his theory is poorly presented, full of nonsenses like I’ve already shown, and doesn’t match the known evidence. It’s been such a muddled mess over the years the Altenberg 16 meeting had to take place.

    Ugh, I just noticed the last portion of previous comment didn’t keep the formatting.

    Here’s a more cleaned up version:

    1. He routinely assumes points have been proven.
    a. Presented as a ’may be’ without evidence: “It may be said that natural selection is daily and hourly scrutinising, throughout the world, every variation, even the slightest; rejecting that which is bad, preserving and adding up all that is good; silently and insensibly working, whenever and wherever opportunity offers, at the improvement of each organic being in relation to its organic and inorganic conditions of life.“
    b. Assumes first is proven, thus a conclusion: “Hence I can see no reason to doubt that natural selection might be most effective”
    c. Again: “So, conversely, modifications in the adult will probably often affect the structure of the larva”
    d. Changes from ‘probably’ to ‘will’ without evidence: “Natural selection will modify the structure of the young in relation to the parent, and of the parent in relation to the young.”
    e. He references his own statements as ‘evidence’: “We have evidence of this, in the facts given in the second chapter, showing that it is the common species which afford the greatest number of recorded varieties, or incipient species.”

    2. He routinely denies the reader of his evidence.
    a. “It is hopeless to attempt to convince any one of the truth of this proposition without giving the long array of facts which I have collected, and which cannot possibly be here introduced.”
    b. “I have collected a long list of such cases; but here, as before, I lie under a great disadvantage in not being able to give them.”
    c. “Here, as on other occasions, I lie under a heavy disadvantage, for out of the many striking cases which I have collected, I can give only one or two instances”

    3. He doesn’t use the scientific method beyond observation. So far, he attempt one experiment with bees. Here are the highlights.
    a. “By such modifications of instincts in themselves not very wonderful,–hardly more wonderful than those which guide a bird to make its nest,–I believe that the hive-bee has acquired, through natural selection, her inimitable architectural powers.”
    b. “But this theory can be tested by experiment.”
    c. “and I suspect that the bees in such cases stand in the opposed cells and push and bend the ductile and warm wax (which as I have tried is easily done) into its proper intermediate plane, and thus flatten it.”
    d. “Some of these statements differ from those made by the justly celebrated elder Huber, but I am convinced of their accuracy; and if I had space, I could show that they are conformable with my theory.” — He stopped here. That’s it. Had theory, tried to set up an experiment, ran out of space, and declared it to be successful.
    e. This also applies to point 2: “This capacity in bees of laying down under certain circumstances a rough wall in its proper place between two just-commenced cells, is important, as it bears on a fact, which seems at first quite subversive of the foregoing theory; namely, that the cells on the extreme margin of wasp-combs are sometimes strictly hexagonal; but I have not space here to enter on this subject.” He admits his theory has a major flaw, but he won’t address it.

    I hope that’s a little easier to read.

  15. The discovery f Homo Naledi is more evidence that Darwin was right. This is a great transitional form from ape-like to human.

  16. Are you going to answer any of my questions or just continue to ignore them?

    “In paleoanthropology, specimens are traditionally held close to the vest until they can be carefully analyzed and the results published, with full access to them granted only to the discoverer’s closest collaborators. By this protocol, answering the central mystery of the Rising Star find—What is it?—could take years, even decades. Berger wanted the work done and published by the end of the year.” http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2015/09/150910-human-evolution-change/

    They have no idea when Homo naledi existed. They have no idea where it fits in the schema of things. To call it proof of anything is naive at best.

    “Berger invited more than 30 young scientists, some with the ink still wet on their Ph.D.’s, to Johannesburg from some 15 countries, for a blitzkrieg fossil fest lasting six weeks.” Ibid.

    The work done, in a word, was sloppy. They rushed it with unproven Ph.D.s, not involving more experienced paleontologists.

    My prediction is within five years, most of the current published findings about Homo nadeli will be over turned, and the rest heavily modified.

    “That made for a mystery as perplexing as that of H. naledi’s identity: How did the remains get into such an absurdly remote chamber?” Ibid.

    And there’s a slim possibility this is a hoax.

    Again, we are back to suddenly finding evidence of species that seemingly appear out of the blue before disappearing just as rapidly, with no hard evidence of what happened on either end, just a lot of speculation and “Just So” stories.

    Have you read Darwin’s book?

  17. No, I haven’t read Darwin’s book. All I am trying to clarify is this. You said that Darwin doesn’t provide any evidence in his book so therefore it’s junk science. I came by and tried to say that so many others have provided the evidence for him validating is theory. He built the foundation, others built the house on it.

    I don’t think this is a hoax. As far as I know, it has been peer reviewed and determined that all the fossils belong to one species with a mix of ape like and human like traits. I haven’t seen anyone dispute that. The burial idea is still up in the air but it is the best hypothesis so far.

    Fossils don’t appear out of nowhere like creationists like to quote mine. They simply evolve into another form which is what we see in the fossil record. Every fossil is a transition. Creatures living today are transitions including humans. It is unrealistic to want to find every fossil in order to validate Darwin’s theory. We have enough to form the picture.

    Please restate your questions. I guess I lost track of them.

  18. “No, I haven’t read Darwin’s book. All I am trying to clarify is this. You said that Darwin doesn’t provide any evidence in his book so therefore it’s junk science. ”

    Do you often defend things about which you are admittedly ignorant?

  19. I am layman when it comes to evolution but I am not ignorant about it. I know enough to defend the theory that he has brought forth.

  20. You haven’t read the source material. You are ignorant to what he actually wrote, admittedly so. You are defending a theory you don’t understand and has been ‘corrected’ by the Neo-Darwinists and then tossed out by the Altenberg 16 conference. Despite your claim “I know about the Altenberg 16” you have evinced no understanding of the impact of that conference.

    Your assertion that Homo nadeli “is a great transitional form from ape-like to human” is nothing more than supposition on your part, and contrary to what’s currently published by the team that found and presented their findings.

    To date, you’ve rattled off terms and claimed that was evidence. You haven’t addressed anything else I’ve written, including Popper’s demarcation of what constitutes valid empirical science.

    By your own admittance, you rather have someone else do work for you than do a little legwork yourself: “Please restate your questions.”

    Do you have anything to add to this discussion that is grounded in logic or facts?

  21. The Altenberg 16 still accepts Darwin’s theory of common ancestry. They just don’t accept the mechanism of it. So what? Hundreds of other scientists from around the world in the same field still do accept the mechanism of natural selection. Darwinism has become Neo-Darwinism simply because it has incorporated Mendelian Genetics into the theory as the source of the random variation in the form of mutations. All Darwin had to go on was the fossils of his day but since then genetics has supported his theory.

  22. You literally have no idea what you are talking about.

    From “The Extended Synthesis”:

    “The overcoming of gradualism, externalism, and gene centrism are the general hallmarks of the Extended Synthesis, whether in the forms presented here or in the various other accounts to a similar effect published since the late 1990’s.”

    If you understood Darwin’s actual arguments, and if you understood this statement, then you’d understand the impact the Altenberg 16 have had on Darwinism and Neo-Darwinism.

    “Hundreds of other scientists from around the world in the same field still do accept the mechanism of natural selection.”

    Appeal to authority.

    You’ve been wrong about everything. You have no idea what Darwin’s actual arguments were, and what Altenberg 16 accept or support. You don’t understand Homo nadeli, or the actual statements from the team presenting their findings.

    Why do you hate science so much?

  23. Tell you what, Russell. If Darwinism or Neo-Darwinism is wrong and you understand it all really well, I ask you to write a scientific paper that shows all the accumulated evidence is incorrect and Darwin’s theory is bogus. Submit it for peer review and if it passes, you will have revolutionized an scientific discipline that has been the hallmark in biology for the past 150 years. You will have overturned thousands of experiments and proven thousands of scientists wrong. You will be bigger than Darwin himself. You seem so cock sure of it all then I challenge you to put your money where your mouth is. Show me exactly where it’s all wrong.

  24. “If Darwinism or Neo-Darwinism is wrong”

    Besides, why should I do the work when the Altenberg 16 have already done so as shown in “The Extended Synthesis”?

    “hallmark in biology for the past 150 years”

    And Ptolemy’s theory held from his death until Copernicus disproved it, so that was roughly 2nd century to the 16th century. This is a logical fallacy you are making, the age of accepted theory has no bearing on whether that theory is correct or not.

    Your appeal to my pride is amusing, however.

    You’ve been wrong about everything in this thread.

    Why don’t you try using facts and logic instead various fallacies, such appeals to authority, and your admitted ignorance?

  25. “You don’t understand Homo nadeli, or the actual statements from the team presenting their findings.

    Why do you hate science so much?”

    The Homo Naledi find destroys any creationist account of human origins. Not only is this a good candidate for the missing link that lead the genus Homo but it also shows that the “image of god” is not unique to humans since this species buried it’s dead. I have read other articles from YEC, OEC and IDists sites. None of them offer a plausible scientific alternative to the data. All they say is that “it’s too early” or “more study needed” or “it’s just another ape”. Creationists of any stripe just can’t admit that they are wrong.

    Also, you haven’t even offered any counter evidence to my evidence. You just fluffed them off. It seems like all you want me to do is admit that Darwin didn’t offer any evidence for his theories and therefore it should be junk science. OK. I admit that but so many others have offered it up in his place.

    This typical of creationist theists:
    1) Offer evidence and they fluff it off or bring in bogus science.
    2) Tell them that a majority of scientist accept evolution, they counter with appeal to authority
    3) Tell them that hundreds of experiments have been done, they bring in Ptolemy or an atheist agenda of some kind.

    Nothing is acceptable as evidence for evolution. NOTHING. I used to be a christian creationist until I looked at the evidence for evolution objectively. I could no longer be honest with myself and I left the faith. So I do know a thing or two of what I’m talking about.

    The question is: Why do YOU hate science so much?

  26. jlafan2001″This is a great transitional form from ape-like to human.”

    “In some ways the new hominin from Rising Star was even closer to modern humans than Homo erectus is.” NatGeo

    jlafan2001 ‘All they say is that “it’s too early” or “more study needed”‘

    “Berger invited more than 30 young scientists, some with the ink still wet on their Ph.D.’s, to Johannesburg from some 15 countries, for a blitzkrieg fossil fest lasting six weeks.” Same article.

    jlafan2001 “but it also shows that the “image of god” is not unique to humans since this species buried it’s dead.”

    “Deliberate disposal of bodies would still have required the hominins to find their way to the top of the chute through pitch-black darkness and back again, which almost surely would have required light—torches, or fires lit at intervals. The notion of such a small-brained creature exhibiting such complex behavior seems so unlikely that many other researchers have simply refused to credit it.” Same article.

    jlafan2001 “Nothing is acceptable as evidence for evolution. NOTHING.”
    WHICH version of EVOLUTION are you talking about? Darwin, Neo-Darwin, Modern Synthesis, Extended Synthesis? Just to rattle of A FEW I know a little something ABOUT. Did the CAPS help? I think they DRIVE the POINT home BETTER.

    jlafan2001 “Tell them that a majority of scientist accept evolution, they counter with appeal to authority”
    I’m a THEM now? Excellent!

    We would like to point out to you that “An appeal to authority is an argument from the fact that a person judged to be an authority affirms a proposition to the claim that the proposition is true” is precisely what you are doing. Darn those pesky definitions!

    And we would like to point another fallacy, Appeal to Popularity: “Appeals to popularity suggest that an idea must be true simply because it is widely held.”

    jlafan2001 “Tell them that hundreds of experiments have been done, they bring in Ptolemy or an atheist agenda of some kind.”

    We would like to point out that Ptolemy’s earth centric model had been tested for centuries with many experiments done to prove it was true. We are charitable and assume you had a slight typo, and had forgotten you had already claimed thousands of experiments. “You will have overturned thousands of experiments and proven thousands of scientists wrong.”

    We would like to know how a committing another appeal to authority fallacy somehow makes the numbers you cited (thousands! hundreds!), without a single reference we note, any more valid.

    jlafan2001″Also, you haven’t even offered any counter evidence to my evidence.” “It seems like all you want me to do is admit that Darwin didn’t offer any evidence for his theories and therefore it should be junk science.”

    You are way too short for this ride.

    1) If A then B
    (2) B
    Therefore:
    (3) A

    Do you recognize this? Do you understand there is nothing about B that can make this a valid argument?

    Darwin only supplied “Just so” stories. There is no way to falsify his theory. He offered no evidence in his book, aside from one incomplete examination of bees. He did appeal to authority quite often, though. Hmm. Makes us wonder. Regardless, Bacon and Descartes had been dead for over 200 years when Darwin penned his story book, Darwin had no excuse not understand and apply the scientific method. Popper further demolished Darwin with the demarcation of empirical science.

    Finding better methods of calculating retrograde motion isn’t painting a better picture of the solar system.

    “I used to be a christian creationist until I looked at the evidence for evolution objectively.”

    But you didn’t read his book. We assume you used different means than most. Dreams? Scrying? Consulted a haruspex?

    Besides, we don’t care. We do care about empirical science and logic, unlike yourself.

    What’s amusing you keep making the same mistakes over and over again, despite all the instruction we’ve given. Aristotle was right.

    Why do you hate science and logic so much?

  27. So, after all these posts, we still come back to the same three points:

    1) I’m not qualified to present evidence for Darwin’s theory because I haven’t read his book
    2) Even if I did read his book, the evidence still wouldn’t matter because Darwin never presented any evidence in his book (even though the evidence has been tested, supported and accepted by the scientific method. I mean common ancestry here which apparently you didn’t realize if you asked for a definition.)
    3) I’m dumb, stupid and ignorant because of points 1 and 2

    BTW, I want an answer to the ERV’s.If you are smarter than me, please provide a rebuttal to them. Of course, I suspect that you will fluff it off, imply I’m ignorant, move to another point and then claim victory on the debate. All without addressing the evidence of ERV’s for common ancestry validating Darwin’s book.

  28. Along the way we’ve discovered the following:
    1) You hate science
    2) You hate logic
    3) You defend things of which you are ignorant.
    4) You are lazy.
    5) Your reading comprehension skills need work.
    6) You are ignorant of the history and nature of science.
    7) You’ve mistaken my position more than once. Assuming that I was a YEC at the start, for example.
    8) You’ve mistaken a belief in a Creator and Him being responsible for the Universe as empirical science. It’s not.
    9) You’ve given a stellar example to support Aristotle: “Moreover, before some audiences not even the possession of the exactest knowledge will make it easy for what we say to produce conviction. For argument based on knowledge implies instruction, and there are people whom one cannot instruct.”
    10) You’ve constantly committed logical fallacies.

    Let’s take a look at your three points.
    1) If you haven’t read it, you don’t what’s in it. See my points 1,2,3,4,5,6,10
    2) You don’t directly know the argument Darwin makes for common ancestry. You have not cited a single source for evidence for it. Referencing terms in of themselves is not providing evidence. And again, which version of Darwinism?
    For example, Doolittle WF and Bapteste E. “Pattern pluralism and the Tree of Life hypothesis.” Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 104(7):2043-2049, January 29, 2007 posits not a single common ancestor:
    “Darwin claimed that a unique inclusively hierarchical pattern of relationships between all organisms based on their similarities and differences [the Tree of Life (TOL)] was a fact of nature, for which evolution, and in particular a branching process of descent with modification, was the explanation. However, there is no independent evidence that the natural order is an inclusive hierarchy, and incorporation of prokaryotes into the TOL is especially problematic. The only data sets from which we might construct a universal hierarchy including prokaryotes, the sequences of genes, often disagree and can seldom be proven to agree. Hierarchical structure can always be imposed on or extracted from such data sets by algorithms designed to do so, but at its base the universal TOL rests on an unproven assumption about pattern that, given what we know about process, is unlikely to be broadly true. This is not to say that similarities and differences between organisms are not to be accounted for by evolutionary mechanisms, but descent with modification is only one of these mechanisms, and a single tree-like pattern is not the necessary (or expected) result of their collective operation. Pattern pluralism (the recognition that different evolutionary models and representations of relationships will be appropriate, and true, for different taxa or at different scales or for different purposes) is an attractive alternative to the quixotic pursuit of a single true TOL.”

    Darwin’s common descent argument is non-testable, non-falsifiable, ergo it is not empirical science. Along the way it was rejected in favor of something like the above. See points 1,2,3,4,5,6,9.

    3) 7,9,10. I’ve not called you dumb, or stupid. Just ignorant. Being too short for this ride is exactly that. Ignorance is fixable.

    BTW, I don’t care about your BTW. Your repeated refusal to answer my questions have not garnered any good will from me. Demanding something from me at this point is hubris. More so since I have answered the question already, in this comment and elsewhere.

    Do you have anything to add to this discussion that is grounded in logic or empirical science?

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