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Switch to Forum Live View And the devastating evidence keeps rolling in …
6 years ago  ::  Jun 10, 2012 - 7:12AM #41
rsielin
Posts: 4,997

As the sayings go ...


If your theory ends with "and then a miracle occurs", you've left the realm of science and entered the realm of theology.


You can believe whatever you want, it's just when doing science you have to get your science right or you fail. 

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6 years ago  ::  Jun 10, 2012 - 5:12PM #42
Thetanager
Posts: 1,903

Jun 9, 2012 -- 4:50PM, Midutch wrote:

Of course it does. It supports the Theory of Evolution quite well and, SINCE NO OTHER SCIENTIFIC THEORIES EXIST, it does does NOT support those NON-existent "theories" ... since they don't exist.


There are NO other "theories".


This line of evidence does NOT support anything other than the Theory of Evolution, becuase nothing else exists.


You've been told this before. Why is that so hard for you to understand?



Midutch, it fits into more theories. I never said this evidence directly points to other theories. But it does not contradict intelligent pixies as creators, for they could have chosen to make the skulls similarly for whatever reasons. If the great pixie made our world and chose to give birds and baby dinosaurs similar skulls (without common ancestry link), she could have done that and our fossil data (of skull comparisons at least) would be exactly as it is in our real world. At least as far as I know. If you think the data would be different given a pixie creator, please explain why. Then, perhaps, this evidence/article has some impact beyond an inner discussion of the theory of evolution. If you can do that, even this simpleton will be able to understand.


Even if you want to say that only the scientific theory counts, that judgment between theories (or theories and "pipe dreams" or however you want to distinguish them from science) is based on evidence outside of this comparison of skull features (as you have been arguing: that there is no other reason to accept them as true).


Jun 9, 2012 -- 6:19PM, Oncomintrain wrote:

What favors Evolution is the fact that Evolution provides an explanation for why the skulls are that way, AND NOT SOME OTHER WAY. Bird skulls look like juveline dinosaurs skulls (instead of looking like the skulls of some other animal) because birds descend from dinosaurs. Creationism CANNOT explain why the skulls are not "some other way," since God could have made them any way he liked.



So, then, all species have similar skulls as the species they are descended from? Or does evolution remain a valid theory whether or not this is the case? If it is the latter, then evolution does not necessarily give why it is in this case, but not other cases. It is just trying to be descriptive within its own framework. And Creationism can explain why...it says God chooses to out of his own free will. Certainly not a scientific explanation. Creationists can then still try to see what biological or environmental benefits such a thing may have given the overall theory of a creator. But, of course, all of this does not mean creationism trumps evolution.

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6 years ago  ::  Jun 10, 2012 - 7:35PM #43
steven_guy
Posts: 11,879

Jun 10, 2012 -- 5:12PM, Thetanager wrote:

Midutch, it fits into more theories. I never said this evidence directly points to other theories. But it does not contradict intelligent pixies as creators, for they could have chosen to make the skulls similarly for whatever reasons. If the great pixie made our world and chose to give birds and baby dinosaurs similar skulls (without common ancestry link), she could have done that and our fossil data (of skull comparisons at least) would be exactly as it is in our real world. At least as far as I know. If you think the data would be different given a pixie creator, please explain why.



Sure, pixies could have created the entire world last Thursday and created us with false memories of time before last Thursday and made the world look like it is billions of years old. However, just like in the case of birds being an evolutionary branch of dinosaurs, the world appears to have existed for a very long time because of the evidence we see around us. Consider Occam's Razor and parsimonious thinking. For the earth to have been created fully formed and made to look older last Thursday is a convoluted and frankly unlikely scenario. The same is true of the evolution of birds from dinosaurs. One could argue, I suppose, that they were "designed" as they evolved from dinosaurs by God. An argument against this is why would an omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent being need to do things in such a crude way? You're probably aware that more than 99% of all the species that have ever existed are now extinct. This does really help the idea that evolution or the "design" of life has been helped along by an omnipotent being. 



Jun 10, 2012 -- 5:12PM, Thetanager wrote:

 Then, perhaps, this evidence/article has some impact beyond an inner discussion of the theory of evolution. If you can do that, even this simpleton will be able to understand.


Even if you want to say that only the scientific theory counts, that judgment between theories (or theories and "pipe dreams" or however you want to distinguish them from science) is based on evidence outside of this comparison of skull features (as you have been arguing: that there is no other reason to accept them as true).


So, then, all species have similar skulls as the species they are descended from? Or does evolution remain a valid theory whether or not this is the case? If it is the latter, then evolution does not necessarily give why it is in this case, but not other cases. It is just trying to be descriptive within its own framework. And Creationism can explain why...it says God chooses to out of his own free will. Certainly not a scientific explanation. Creationists can then still try to see what biological or environmental benefits such a thing may have given the overall theory of a creator. But, of course, all of this does not mean creationism trumps evolution. 



Firstly, there are no alternative theories of the origin of species. Evolution is the only game in town and it is supported by mountains of evidence, observation and research in a number of fields (genetics is an example).


I do not agree that Creationism can "explain why" in relation to anything. 


Creationism doesn't even come close to trumping evolution any more than Flat-earthers could come close to trumping modern geography. Creationism is simply wrong, which wouldn't matter at all if Creationists weren't trying to push their crackpot ideas and junk science into children's classrooms and text books.

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6 years ago  ::  Jun 10, 2012 - 9:13PM #44
Oncomintrain
Posts: 3,516

Jun 10, 2012 -- 5:12PM, Thetanager wrote:


Jun 9, 2012 -- 6:19PM, Oncomintrain wrote:

What favors Evolution is the fact that Evolution provides an explanation for why the skulls are that way, AND NOT SOME OTHER WAY. Bird skulls look like juveline dinosaurs skulls (instead of looking like the skulls of some other animal) because birds descend from dinosaurs. Creationism CANNOT explain why the skulls are not "some other way," since God could have made them any way he liked.



So, then, all species have similar skulls as the species they are descended from? Or does evolution remain a valid theory whether or not this is the case? 




Based on the degree of historical remove, yes... in my layman's opinion, it is reasonable to expect that we would find similarity between the skulls of ancestral and descendent species, based on my understanding of evolutionary science. Particularly, I would expect to find similarities in the fine details. Convergent evolution may lead divergent species to develop similar gross features in order to fill a particular ecological niche. But it tends to leave intact many of the smaller things, and that helps us distinguish convergently evolved species from related ones... an idea that is borne out by the available genetic evidence.


If bird skulls resembled (in the finer details) the skulls of other organisms more than they resembled the skulls of therapodian dinosaurs, that would certainly damage the theory that birds evolved from therapodian dinosaurs. Would it disprove the Theory of Evolution? No, not necessarily... it might simply suggest that birds belong to a different ancestral lineage.


However, birds were already understood to resemble therapodian dinosaurs in many of their fine bodily details (again, most notably, in advanced featheration). If it had turned out that birds resembled therapods in the fine details of their bodies, but some other organisms (say, snakes for example) in the fine details of their skulls, then yes, that WOULD present a challenge to our current evolutionary biological understanding, as it would contradict the nested heirarchy predicted by the ToE. (This all breaks down with single celled organisms, where lateral gene transfer is common.)


So, in short, if bird skulls did NOT resemble therapod skulls, it would have the POTENTIAL to damage the credibility of evolutionary biology IF no reasonable explanation for the discrepency could be found.


But in being consistent with prior evidence, it further CONFIRMS evolutionary theory, strengthening (if only by a tiny bit) the case for evolution.


And Creationism can explain why...it says God chooses to out of his own free will.



But that fails as an explanation, because God could have chosen to make them ANY way out of His own free will. Creationism CANNOT be strengthened on the basis of evidence, for the same reason it cannot be WEAKENED on the basis of evidence: Creationism (in playing the "because God wanted it that way" card) makes itself EQUALLY compatible with ANY evidence.


So evolutionary science GAINS further credence by this discovery, while Creationism gains nothing. It is one more tiny way (added to a myriad of already existing ways) that Evolution is demonstrated as the stronger, more useful explanation for the history and diversity of life on Earth.

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6 years ago  ::  Jun 11, 2012 - 6:37PM #45
Midutch
Posts: 5,975

Jun 10, 2012 -- 5:12PM, Thetanager wrote:


Jun 9, 2012 -- 4:50PM, Midutch wrote:

Of course it does. It supports the Theory of Evolution quite well and, SINCE NO OTHER SCIENTIFIC THEORIES EXIST, it does does NOT support those NON-existent "theories" ... since they don't exist.


There are NO other "theories".


This line of evidence does NOT support anything other than the Theory of Evolution, becuase nothing else exists.


You've been told this before. Why is that so hard for you to understand?



Midutch, it fits into more theories.


No, it does not.


There are NO other theories that it can fit into because NO other scientific THEORIES exist.


I never said this evidence directly points to other theories. But it does not contradict intelligent pixies as creators, for they could have chosen to make the skulls similarly for whatever reasons.


So what. Pixies messing with the dino DNA so that birds retain their baby skulls is NOT ... repeat, NOT a theory. It's a silly, off the cuff, try to make it sound as ridiculous as "fundie christian creationism" "fairy tale" that I just made up to clearly show what does NOT qualify as a THEORY.


Obviously, you didn't catch that.


If the great pixie made our world and chose to give birds and baby dinosaurs similar skulls (without common ancestry link), she could have done that and our fossil data (of skull comparisons at least) would be exactly as it is in our real world.


What part of "it's NOT a theory" did you not understand?


At least as far as I know. If you think the data would be different given a pixie creator, please explain why. Then, perhaps, this evidence/article has some impact beyond an inner discussion of the theory of evolution. If you can do that, even this simpleton will be able to understand.


Wow. Just, wow.



"creationism" ... 2000+ years worth of ABYSMAL FAILURE ... and proud of it.
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6 years ago  ::  Jun 11, 2012 - 8:04PM #46
Thetanager
Posts: 1,903

Okay, midutch.  Thanks to everyone helping me to understand this piece of evidence and how it fits evolutionary theory and whatnot.  Hope to see you all around on other topics.

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6 years ago  ::  Jun 13, 2012 - 10:41AM #47
rsielin
Posts: 4,997

Jun 11, 2012 -- 8:04PM, Thetanager wrote:

Okay, midutch.  Thanks to everyone helping me to understand this piece of evidence and how it fits evolutionary theory and whatnot.  Hope to see you all around on other topics.


I'm not so sure you really understand. But if you are now willing to leave the real science to the real science professionals, I think real progress has been made. After all, that's what the controversy truly boils down to be.


Take care. Thanks for the conversation.

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6 years ago  ::  Jun 14, 2012 - 8:09AM #48
Thetanager
Posts: 1,903

Jun 13, 2012 -- 10:41AM, rsielin wrote:

I'm not so sure you really understand. But if you are now willing to leave the real science to the real science professionals, I think real progress has been made. After all, that's what the controversy truly boils down to be.


Take care. Thanks for the conversation.



You've missed the whole point of what I was doing here.  I was not making a scientific analysis of the evidence, for the very reason that I am not a "real science professional."  I know my limits there and never said the science was wrong or that creationism was scientific.  I was simply making a philosophical analysis.  You don't have to be a "real philosophy professional" to discuss that with me, but at least address it philosophically or we will continue to just talk past each other.

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6 years ago  ::  Jun 14, 2012 - 8:39AM #49
rsielin
Posts: 4,997

Jun 14, 2012 -- 8:09AM, Thetanager wrote:

... I was simply making a philosophical analysis.  You don't have to be a "real philosophy professional" to discuss that with me, but at least address it philosophically or we will continue to just talk past each other.


My apologies. I'm only prepared to discuss the science. And I stand by my OP statement as factual.  

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6 years ago  ::  Jun 14, 2012 - 10:31AM #50
d_p_m
Posts: 11,236

Jun 14, 2012 -- 8:09AM, Thetanager wrote:


Jun 13, 2012 -- 10:41AM, rsielin wrote:

I'm not so sure you really understand. But if you are now willing to leave the real science to the real science professionals, I think real progress has been made. After all, that's what the controversy truly boils down to be.


Take care. Thanks for the conversation.



You've missed the whole point of what I was doing here.  I was not making a scientific analysis of the evidence, for the very reason that I am not a "real science professional."  I know my limits there and never said the science was wrong or that creationism was scientific.  I was simply making a philosophical analysis.  You don't have to be a "real philosophy professional" to discuss that with me, but at least address it philosophically or we will continue to just talk past each other.




There is an area of overlap here, more specialized than general philosophy, commonly referred to as the philosophy of science. Among other things, it looks at how we know things about science, how the logical underpinnings work, how we classify different types of knowledge, how we learn about the universe, how we understand the universe, etc.


This overlaps with, but is not identical to, the more pragmatic issues about the methodology and practice of science. It also, of necessity, touches on terminology and definitions.


Under the tenets of the PoS, and the application of the MoS, things like ID and
Last Tuesdayism, and Evolution Fairies are not theories, nor even hypotheses. To put it another way, Dr. Behe, the inventer of IC (irreducible complexity), admitted under oath in Kitzmiller vs Dover, that in order to make Intelligent Design science, one would have to use a definition of science that also made Astrology science.


The cross examination, and the findings, are fascinating reading, and demonstrate that Irreducible Complexity is not science, either.


To call ID, or Creation, or IC 'theories' is to use a non-technical, colloquial use of the term, much like people tend to confuse the concepts of weight and mass - something people do in loose, sloppy every day conversations, but which would wreak havoc in an attempt to discuss the branches of physics known as mechanics and relativity.


Thus the experimental results raised about dinosaur and avian skulls cannot contribute support to an alternate theory, because under the time tested definitions of the PoS and the MoS, there are no other theories. This is both a scientific (pragmatic, real world) and philosophical (theoretical, conceptual) conclusion.

"If you aren't confused by quantum physics, you haven't really understood it."
― Niels Bohr

"As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain, as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality."
-- Albert Einstein

"If one is going to engage with the primordial forces of darkness, one must expect a bit of social awkwardness."
-- Penny Dreadful, season one, episode two
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