Miscellany (General)

by dhw, Friday, January 22, 2021, 09:38 (564 days ago) @ David Turell

Magic embryology
DAVID: I repeat, I believe only God can speciate. There is a variety of strange types: seals penguins, etc., who use water to feed but remain land based. God's choice. It proves there no necessity to became entirely aquatic.

You don’t need to keep repeating your belief or to tell us about other species. Just tell us why you think that your God must have popped in to operate on some pre-whales’ legs before they entered the water, and that it’s not possible that these animals found they had a better chance of survival in the water, and in time their bodies adapted to the new environment – a process which included legs being transformed into flippers.

Snakes repel their own venom.
dhw: I repeat: do you believe that organisms autonomously develop antidotes in response to the threat posed by external poisons, or do you believe your God either preprogrammed the antidotes or stepped in to do a dabble? I’ll come onto internal threats when I get your answer.

DAVID: Only simultaneous design will work. If only personal poison is present and kills, how is there survival to develop the antidote? I'm not discussing external poison!!! You are simply avoiding my proposition. I assume God at work here and probably helping with external poisoning.

In answer to your question, maybe the internal poison doesn’t always kill. We kill millions of bacteria with our medications, but others survive and find an “antidote”. Maybe in the same way, some snakes died but others survived. I like your answer to my question, since “probably” leaves open the possibility that your God did not help. This can only mean that he may have given the eight snakes the wherewithal to find their own way of surviving external poisons. I would suggest that the same mechanism for doing so would also be present in the two snakes that needed to find antidotes to the poison from within.

Darwin scientists find useless evolution
DAVID: I don't need to reply to your assertions God doesn't know what He is doing. Unexplained as yet is enough response.

dhw: That is not my assertion! You claim that your God designed useless molecules, as if somehow this made a mockery of Darwinian evolution.

DAVID: It is the Darwinists who claim the molecules are useless and survived by habit!!!! My answer above suffices.

You asked: “What happened to perfect natural selection which always makes the right choices?” I have told you what happened to natural selection. According to the article, the molecules are harmless, in which case there was no necessity to discard them. If they turn out to be useful, then of course natural selection will preserve them. No problem then for Darwinian evolution. However, you also wrote: “And note molecules are not intelligent, because they make these terrible mistakes!” That’s you talking about terrible mistakes, not the authors of the article, and since you believe that your God designed absolutely everything, I have every right to ask you why you think your God designed molecules that make terrible mistakes. Your answer (that I am saying “God doesn’t know what he is doing”) is totally out of order.

QUOTE: "The researchers note that the diverse responses to opposing cues may allow macrophages to more readily adapt to changing environments, as well as to quickly transition from attack mode to focusing on tissue repair.”

DAVID: Very clever design to have these cells multitask.

Yes indeed. The ability of these cells to multitask in order to meet the needs imposed or opportunities offered by changing environments may well be the key to speciation.

De novo or orphan genes
QUOTES: The authors describe bursts of innovation: upon the origin of placental mammals, 357 novel genes; upon the origin of the metazoan, 1,189 novel genes; upon the origin of the land plants, 1,167 novel genes; and upon the origin of the flowering plants, 2,525 novel genes.
"[..] This leads the authors to infer massive gene losses and frequent horizontal gene transfer in the history of life.

DAVID: Gould's gaps and punctuation stares at you in your face. Behe laughs about the losses. This question is not 'wide open' as this discontinuity is perfect evidence of God the designer at work stepping in.

The article is a complete vindication of my description of the process, under Evolution: a different view with loss of traits; not Behe. On 18 September 2020, 11.09, I wrote: “The process of evolution entails the acquisition of new genes (or new functions for old genes) and loss of unwanted genes, which will be weeded out by natural selection.” However, I should have included horizontal gene transfer. I see absolutely no reason why you should regard the discontinuity as evidence of God stepping in. I would say it is due to the fact that environmental change occurs in bursts, and speciation is a consequence of cell communities responding to new requirements and/or opportunities provided by those changes, whether local or global. If existing structures cannot cope with or exploit these changes, they will die – hence the extinction of 99% of past species. But the source of the ability to change (adapt or innovate) remains an open question, and your God is a possible answer to that question.

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