23 Replies to “FINALLY! Video of John Sanford’s 10/18/18 presentation at the NIH”

  1. stcordova
    Ignored
    says:

    John wrote me this morning to provide me the link and said he stumbled through a lot of words. That means he said a few things one way meaning to say another.

    Using his other writings, I think it becomes relatively clear his intended meaning.

    Up front, I saw one ERRATA on his slides regarding Kimura and the Bonker’s equation.

    1/e^-u should probably be 2/e^-u. Ugh, for that matter it could be simplified to 2e^U

  2. Tom English Tom English
    Ignored
    says:

    Calling Bill Basener:

    [14:30] “Basener’s Formula” does not appear in the article by Basener and Sanford that Sanford refers to, and I don’t know how to connect it to Eqs. 3.3 and 3.4 of the article.

  3. Tom English Tom English
    Ignored
    says:

    Salvador,

    Why don’t you go ahead and tell everyone who and what the Scientia et Philosophia Interest Group at NIH is?

    Scientia et Philosophia Interest Group
    The Scientia et Philosophia Interest Group seeks to foster and expand the knowledge and understanding of the NIH research community and staff of the philosophical foundations of the scientific endeavour. In an interdisciplinary, open and inclusive environment, Scientia et Philosophia promotes an exchange of knowledge in a diversity of fields and topics including the philosophy, origins, and foundations of Science; Logic and Rationalism; Cosmology, Cosmogony; Biology, Biogeny; Ethics, Meta-ethics, and Metaphysics; and history of philosophy (classical to modern). The group stresses how our current empirical scientific projects in basic and clinical research are inseparably tethered to these philosophical underpinnings, and strengthened when clearly grounded on a strong philosophical foundation. A good working knowledge of the philosophical foundations of science and the limits of rationalism allow for better formulation of scientific experimental design, model construction, and parsimonious extraction of inferred conclusions. This SIG is open to Intramural Investigators, Staff and Trainees, as well as Extramural affiliates and academic scientists and clinicians outside the NIH. Activities will include regular discussion meetings, internal and external speakers, and webinars.

    Mailing List
    To join the Scientia et Philosophia Interest Group mailing list, please visit the Scientia et Philosophia Interest Group Listserv home page, then click the “Subscribe or Unsubscribe” link in the right sidebar.

    Chair
    Peter Leeds, NIMH

    Advisor
    Peter Leeds, NIMH

    As best I can tell by googling, Peter Leeds, B.S., is a laboratory manager. Is he also a YEC, Salvador? Were you aware that the interest groups are characterized as intramural? If so, then why did you not tell everyone, i.e., why did you instead make a big deal of the venue?

    Then there’s the article in the April 8, 2018, issue of the NIH Record, “Soul Man: [J. P.] Moreland Speaks at First ‘Science & Philosophy’ Event“:

    Philosopher Dr. J.P. Moreland explored such dueling perspectives recently in his talk “Philosophical and Empirical-Neuroscience for Determining the Nature and Existence of Consciousness and the Soul,” the first lecture in a series hosted by the newly formed NIH scientia et philosophia interest group.

  4. stcordova
    Ignored
    says:

    Tom English:

    Were you aware that the interest groups are characterized as intramural?

    I don’t know what all that means, all I know is Dr. Sanford delivered a message to some people at the NIH who really appreciated what he had to say. The message was about “Human Genetic Deterioration.”

    But if the human race is quickly going to oblivion, why are you straining at gnats and letting camels go through? That’s the real issue. You’re dying, I’m dying, the human race is dying. Don’t you think we should reflect on this fact and give us pause how we live our lives.

    You can ask any of the evolutionists here if they really believe the human genome is improving. If not, then what’s your beef with Sanford specific talk? Like maybe the human condition is worse than we ever imagined. Truth hurts, doesn’t it.

    Such, in outline, but even more purposeless, more void of meaning, is the world which Science presents for our belief. Amid such a world, if anywhere, our ideals henceforward must find a home. That Man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms; that no fire, no heroism, no intensity of thought and feeling, can preserve an individual life beyond the grave; that all the labours of the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vast death of the solar system, and that the whole temple of Man’s achievement must inevitably be buried beneath the debris of a universe in ruins–all these things, if not quite beyond dispute, are yet so nearly certain, that no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s habitation henceforth be safely built.

    Bertrand Russell

    Have a nice day! 🙂

  5. stcordova
    Ignored
    says:

    Tom English:

    Is he also a YEC, Salvador?

    No.

    But that’s not relevant anyway as the topic was about human genetic deterioration. So what if the data is YEC friendly, this would be of keen interest to the medical community.

    The general consensus amongst those in the know is that the human genome is toast. The only argument that remains is how bad are we toast.

    So how might creationist arguments be relevant? Well, if the human race is genetically deteriorating, then that’s a problem we need to deal with medically, not just theologically.

    Ironically, some of the proposed solutions are along the lines of re-engineering the genome — ahem, “intelligent design.” But that raises the tough question then, how did we get here in the first place without intelligent design.

    The Bonkers equation shows a human female needs to give 40 offspring if U=3, where U is the number of mutations per individual per generation. Estimates are that U = 10 – 100.

    2e^U = number of offspring per female

    Pretty straight forward math….

    Thanks for your response, but in the scheme of things, I think your obsessing over relatively trivial and irrelevant issues in light of the grim facts and real issues.

  6. Tom English Tom English
    Ignored
    says:

    stcordova: But if the human race is quickly going to oblivion, why are you straining at gnats and letting camels go through? That’s the real issue. You’re dying, I’m dying, the human race is dying. Don’t you think we should reflect on this fact and give us pause how we live our lives.

    You’re right. That’s awful. I see that there’s no time to waste. Now is the time to undertake an aggressive program of research into editing of the human genome.

    It’s great to see that we agree on something for once.

  7. Tom English Tom English
    Ignored
    says:

    stcordova: Thanks for your response, but in the scheme of things, I think your obsessing over relatively trivial and irrelevant issues in light of the grim facts and real issues.

    You are the one who played the shabby little game of inflating the importance of a talk at an intramural organization of the NIH. I can’t say much for the ethics of someone who, when caught going out of his way to mislead people, immediately attacks the person who called foul. But you’re saved by grace, not by works, so ethics are of no great concern to you, are they?

    I have considerably more to say about the talk.

  8. stcordova
    Ignored
    says:

    Tom English:

    Now is the time to undertake an aggressive program of research into editing of the human genome.

    Intelligent design to the rescue (albeit human intelligent re-design of God’s now degenerating design). Of course, that raises the question how we got here in the first place without intelligent design.

    Isn’t the line of argumentation presented in the talk so much more potent than specified complexity and conservation of information? You finally caved and admitted for humanity to persist, it needs intelligent design. It’s not that it needs it now only, but also it needed it in the past. Something you seem reluctant to concede.

  9. Allan Miller
    Ignored
    says:

    One generalised beef I have – it applies to ALL formula-based population genetic modelling – is the simplistic notion that you just scale up one of your parameters and everything else stays the same. A population with large N is shaken just as vigorously as one with small N.

    A formula places all ‘virtual individuals’ at an equal distance from each other – ie no distance, and this simplification persists at all values of N. There is no viscosity to gene flow, but real populations don’t work like that. They are smeared over a surface – in the case of humanity, the whole globe. Imagine a detrimental allele arising in Baltimore. How does it get fixed in all of humanity, to ratchet down our overall fitness?

    This aspect of simple modelling is also germane to arguments I have pursued on the evolution of sex and the threat to it from asexuality, a subject I hope to return to when I have time.

    I’m aware there are models that try to address this geometric aspect to gene flow.

  10. stcordova
    Ignored
    says:

    Allan,

    No severe disagreement from me about what you said.

    The NIH and friends will be sequencing genomes, millions of them. The data will tell us if the human genome is getting sicker. That is already the deep suspicion of many.

    Sanford got a friendly welcome by the NIH staff that were present at his talk because he was willing to say what a few people already suspected, but which many others didn’t want to hear but needed to hear. Now we just have to sit and way and see where the chips fall as far as the data.

  11. stcordova
    Ignored
    says:

    And now Michael Behe, former postdoctorall fellow at the NIH, presents an encore to come in stores near you:

    https://www.harpercollins.com/9780062842619/darwin-devolves/

    The scientist who has been dubbed the “Father of Intelligent Design” and author of the groundbreaking book Darwin’s Black Box contends that recent scientific discoveries further disprove Darwinism and strengthen the case for an intelligent creator.

    In his controversial bestseller Darwin’s Black Box, biochemist Michael Behe challenged Darwin’s theory of evolution, arguing that science itself has proven that intelligent design is a better explanation for the origin of life. In Darwin Devolves, Behe advances his argument, presenting new research that offers a startling reconsideration of how Darwin’s mechanism works, weakening the theory’s validity even more.

    A system of natural selection acting on random mutation, evolution can help make something look and act differently. But evolution never creates something organically. Behe contends that Darwinism actually works by a process of devolution—damaging cells in DNA in order to create something new at the lowest biological levels. This is important, he makes clear, because it shows the Darwinian process cannot explain the creation of life itself. “A process that so easily tears down sophisticated machinery is not one which will build complex, functional systems,” he writes.

    In addition to disputing the methodology of Darwinism and how it conflicts with the concept of creation, Behe reveals that what makes Intelligent Design unique—and right—is that it acknowledges causation. Evolution proposes that organisms living today are descended with modification from organisms that lived in the distant past. But Intelligent Design goes a step further asking, what caused such astounding changes to take place? What is the reason or mechanism for evolution? For Behe, this is what makes Intelligent Design so important.

    I wonder if he’ll be invited to speak at the NIH. I mean, the truth needs to be told.

  12. Entropy Entropy
    Ignored
    says:

    stcordova:
    The NIH and friends will be sequencing genomes, millions of them.

    Will be? They’ve been sequencing genomes for quite a while Sal.

    stcordova:
    The data will tell us if the human genome is getting sicker.

    Which one of all the human genomes Salvador? Yours? Mine? All of them?

    Do you understand that in the life-game what counts is if there’s enough “health” in the genomes of the population for continuing thriving despite “defects” in one or another?

    We expect genomes to be imperfect Salvador. They’re the products of natural processes. You believe in a perfect magical being in the sky who could not make our genomes “”good.” The absurdity is astounding. Yet, there you are, admitting that humans will improve on the imperfect work of the magical being in the sky. I truly don’t understand how you can keep yourself within that absurd belief system.

    stcordova:
    That is already the deep suspicion of many.

    I doubt it because the claim doesn’t make sense. Talking about The Human genome as if there’s only one of them. We’re more than 7 billion humans already.

  13. Mung Mung
    Ignored
    says:

    stcordova: The data will tell us if the human genome is getting sicker.

    Wasn’t Sanford the inventor of the genome sickness detector?

  14. Mung Mung
    Ignored
    says:

    Entropy: We expect genomes to be imperfect Salvador. They’re the products of natural processes.

    This is just so silly. Makes me want to become a YEC. Everything started out perfect and natural processes took it all downhill from there, because that’s what natural processes do, they make perfect things imperfect. I could just cry.

  15. stcordova
    Ignored
    says:

    Mung: Wasn’t Sanford the inventor of the genome sickness detector?

    I think he invented the genomic equivalent of a Gatling Gun. John told me the first versions used real GUNPOWDER!

  16. J-Mac
    Ignored
    says:

    The video looks really bad…I might try to watch when I’m on the plane… Alan Fox just taught me how to properly comment…

  17. Entropy Entropy
    Ignored
    says:

    Mung:
    This is just so silly. Makes me want to become a YEC.

    Really? What do you think I said?

    Mung:
    Everything started out perfect

    When did I say such a thing? I don’t remember saying such a thing. I cannot find it anywhere in any of my comments. Can you point me to it?

    Mung:
    … because that’s what natural processes do, they make perfect things imperfect.

    When did I say that? I don’t remember saying such a thing. I cannot find it either. I checked the search thing above, then checked my comments in the admin thing. Nothing comes back at me. Can you please point me to the comment where I said such a thing?

    Mung:
    I could just cry.

    Well, I’ll cry right next to you if you point me to the comment where I said such a thing as “Everything started out perfect” followed by “natural processes made it imperfect.” I would not become a YEC though. That would be ridiculous. I’d just cry out of shame.

    Maybe you’re mistaking me for Salvador or some other YEC?

  18. J-Mac
    Ignored
    says:

    This video is another example where ID and Evolution supporters went wrong…
    Both sides continue to speculate and no experimental evidence is in sight…
    Why? Is it better that way for both sides?
    I’m tired of this nonsense…

  19. Mung Mung
    Ignored
    says:

    Entropy: Maybe you’re mistaking me for Salvador or some other YEC?

    I’m sure you are not a YEC, but you talk like one.

  20. Entropy Entropy
    Ignored
    says:

    Mung:
    I’m sure you are not a YEC, but you talk like one.

    This is absurd Mung. First you pretend that I said something only a YEC would say, with “threats” that such craziness (YEC craziness), made you feel like becoming a YEC. Since you were unable to find any comment of mine where I made such YEC-proper claims you pretended that I said, I therefore, according to you, talk like a YEC (!!??).

    Let’s see this from a different angle, maybe as a list:

    1. You say I said something a YEC would say.
    2. That YEC-like claim makes you so sick that you’d rather become a YEC (but you said that the YEC-comment is what makes you sick!).
    3. You cannot point to any of my comments saying such a YEC thing.
    4. Therefore, you conclude that I talk like a YEC.

    Shit. No. I cannot make sense of this mess.

  21. Mung Mung
    Ignored
    says:

    Entropy: I cannot make sense of this mess.

    It revolves around the concept of imperfection and who or what is to blame for the imperfections in the world. A YEC would be just as comfortable blaming the imperfections on evolution and probably for much the same reasons.

    However, when you say that imperfection is what we would expect from evolution what are you really saying and what is the baggage that comes along with that? Do you believe there is also imperfection in non-biological processes?

    Why would talk of imperfection even come up at all in talk about biology?

  22. stcordova
    Ignored
    says:

    This my perspective on how Dr. Sanford was able to present at the NIH, there are some mechanics involved at the NIH that I’m not totally privy to, nor does it matter:

    https://discourse.peacefulscience.org/t/john-sanford-at-the-nih/2903/15?u=stcordova

    Dr. Swamidass,

    God bless you brother. I actually met one of your students at Dr. Sanford’s house April 2017, please extend my regards.

    An invitation to speak on the NIH premises is not an endorsement of content anymore than when the NIH hosts vendor tables advertising the medical and bio tech appliances is an endorsement by the NIH for the vendor products.

    The NIH has been a modest ID factory. Affiliated with the NIH has been Richard Sternberg (Staff scientist), Michael Behe (post Doc), David Abel (researcher), several others, many un-named. For that reason I suggested to John to have a PRIVATE meeting on the campus so he could meet individually with some of his supporters there. I was hoping this would lead to maybe some future strategy discussion, not so much to push ID at the NIH, but to raise interest in medical research into genetic deterioration which is a valid medical concern. Though his perspective on genetic deterioration is ID/creation/Young Life Creation friendly, it is a topic that has merit on its own in terms of medical science. Dr. Sanford, being a humanitarian, is profoundly concerned about this. As he opened his talk, Genetic Entropy was originally framed as problems for evolutionary theory, but then of late he has been concerned about its medical implications and the human condition.

    We just needed a sponsor at the NIH to help us get approval to rent a room. I started to contact people I knew at the NIH who thought well of Dr. Sanford, and voila, it turned out Peter Leeds had about a year earlier formed an NIH-approved group that could invite discussion of topics relating to science and philosophy on the NIH campus and supported by NIH facility staff for Audio Visual, etc.

    The Masur Auditorium where Dr. Sanford spoke was the same auditorium where Bill Gates, Barack Obama, and other dignitaries spoke. Such visits by dignitaries, for example should not be construed as an endorsement of Gates MS Windows 10 or Barack Obama’s politics, etc. But if the NIH allows such visits of people with certain viewpoints, it should allow other viewpoints as well. And because the NIH has hospitals and clinics, and patients may be terminally ill there, it also has a chapel where people can pray. So, in as much as the military has government paid chapels and chaplains, the NIH is granted similar leeway given the business they are in. Providentially, Dr. Sanford was given the Mazur Auditorium to deliver his presentation. Apparently he was viewed, rightly so, as a distinguished scientist with distinguished accomplishments and earned the right to be heard in the premier venue.

    I first asked Peter Leeds if John’s foundation could rent a very small room, say for a few hundred dollars for a day or for an evening meeting. Instead, Leeds was enthusiastic and said he was thinking already of inviting such a distinguished scientist as Dr. Sanford to speak and he was grateful that I contacted him. There was no money that had to be paid out for the visit, the NIH, after a difficult approval process granted facility support, the Mazur Auditorium, and placed an announcement on the official NIH calendar and e-mail lists to about 34,000 NIH staff and affiliates.

    Leeds was surprised that Dr. Sanford (in New York) actually had a research assistant (me) who was an onsite reporter at the NIH in Bethesda (I attend many of the NIHs publicly accessible events, such as ENCODE, WALS and FAES events).

    The rest of the NIH mechanics I’m not privy to, but suffice to say, it had to go through a lot of hoops because Sanford is a known creationist. After some discussion and soul searching, Dr. Sanford decided to focus purely on accepted science to make his case, which he did. He did not want to imperil any of the NIH staff or possibly disgrace them by anything he said. So Sanford did not talk ID, did not talk creation.

    Given that the NIH Nobel Laureate Hall has an inscription from the Gospel of John about the pool of Bethesda, and that the NIH has a chapel, I thought it was Ok for John to say in passing at the very end, “our hope is in heaven” since in that very building, building 10, people a terminally ill and dying. I mean, if someone says, “God bless you” on the NIH campus, is that grounds for a Federal case? That was the only sentence John provided that might be construed as non-scientific, and he was careful to qualify it as a personal opinion…

    In that regard, I found it astonishing that there should be ANY pushback on what he said or for his visit. If there is something in error, it would be in the accepted publications he cited, not in something that didn’t go through proper peer review and scrutiny.

  23. stcordova
    Ignored
    says:

    This is my report and commentary on the talk at Crev.Info:

    https://crev.info/2018/11/famous-geneticist-nih/

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