Miscellany (General)

by dhw, Sunday, March 14, 2021, 12:07 (523 days ago) @ David Turell

Your gut has a big brain

DAVID: Autonomous actions can be from following onboard instructions.

dhw: An autonomous being is free to control itself. It does not follow instructions, just as – in your own words – it does not require “new design or help”. Please stop playing with language.

dhw: I hope your silence indicates that you now agree that if cells communicate without new design or help, they are autonomous and do not follow instructions.

DAVID: I don't change. Not worth a response.

I don’t understand how an organism can communicate without new design and help, can act autonomously, and yet has to follow instructions. But I can understand why you don’t wish to explain it.


DAVID: Does each encounter organism explain the process to other organisms to create the automatic process that appears. You want some sort of communication . I say God makes the arrangements.

dhw: Successful strategies are passed on to other members of the species and to their descendants, and of course there is communication. Even bacteria communicate.

DAVID: Your usual platitude. "Communication" does not explain how the experience is transmitted among thousands of individual in a species.

Since we know that successful strategies are passed on, perhaps you’d better give us your own explanation. How exactly does your God teach every possum to play dead, every migrating bird to migrate, every ant to build bridges etc. etc.?


DAVID: God has to design the mechanism and the protective processes all at once. You want natural mechanisms and keep hoping they appear naturally.

Dealt with on the theodicy thread.

New proteins

QUOTE: The vast majority of these de novo proteins are useless, or even slightly deleterious, as they can interfere with existing proteins in the cell. Such new proteins are quickly lost again after several generations, as organisms carrying the new gene encoding the protein have impaired survival or reproduction. However, a select few de novo proteins prove to have beneficial functions. These proteins integrate into the molecular components of cells and eventually, after millions of years of minor modifications, become indispensable.

DAVID: Fascinating, because it is a Darwinian attempt to explain how useful proteins appear by chance. They assume it takes many chance attempts over millions of years. They used computer simulations based on Darwin theories. What it doesn't explain is how the requirement for two simultaneously necessary proteins would appear together. I'm still with God as the designer.

dhw: As always, you seem to think that the word Darwinian automatically disqualifies any theory and any observation. Are you challenging the researchers’ findings that the majority of these proteins are useless, but some prove to be beneficial?

DAVID: I don't think multiple useless proteins are produced. I didn't quote the following, which you might have read:
"They then used evolutionary methods to reconstruct the likely structure of Goddard ~50 million years ago when the protein first arose. What they found was quite a surprise: "The ancestral Goddard protein looked already very much like the ones which exist in fly species today," Erich Bornberg-Bauer explains. "Right from the beginning, Goddard contained some structural elements, so called alpha-helices, which are believed to be essential for most proteins."
(DAVID’s bold)

You have quoted a successful example. May I please ask why you reject the researchers’ claim that there were multiple useless proteins.

DAVID: The usual Darwin assumption a new vital protein component simply evolved. My view is God carefully plans for the future by creating elements such as 'alpha helices' which make advance design easier to code.

I am in no position to challenge the researchers’ claim that there were vast numbers of useless proteins. If there were, then the question would be why – if your God designed the useful protein – he also designed so many useless proteins.

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