Natural Selection – Evolution Magic

Natural Selection is described as “the differential survival and reproduction of individuals due to differences in phenotype”. To this, some add “blind, mindless, and purposeless environmental process” that nonetheless is imagined turning random genetic mutations into superior new features enhancing descendants’ survivability (fitness). Accumulation of these features supposedly turns one lifeform into another over time. Natural Selection seeks to explain the appearance of design in nature without appealing to a designer.

This definition however fails the simplest test as different phenotypes survive different environments thus delinking phenotype from survivability. In a small farm, only organisms closely related to their wild cousins survive, but agribusinesses select for chickens with oversize breasts and research labs select for populations with specific genetic mutations requiring tight environments to survive. Although all these have different phenotypes, they do not possess an intrinsic phenotype “fitness” independent of the environment. In addition, who decides what is natural and what is not? Darwin considered domestication natural enough to include it as supporting argument. And as far as “blind, mindless, and purposeless”, all these are impossible to prove in addition to being utterly incompatible with the anthropic concepts of “better adapted” and “better fit”, both of which cannot be evaluated independent of survivability anyway.

Natural Selection is supposed to tie both ways survivability with phenotype, but this leaves out the environment which not only affects survivability directly, but also phenotype, itself a sum of genotype plus the environment, and even genotype that is a recurrent function of previous genotypes and the environment again. So in the end, survivability is a recurrent function of genotype, an infinite continuum of environments, and other unknown factors. While survivability can be measured as can be the individual genotype, measuring a population’s genotype is daunting at best, and the impact of the ever changing environment is simply impossible to evaluate. Phenotypes are impossible to define and measure in entirety even for one individual and, in addition, phenotype changes constantly from birth to adult to old age. We do see genetic mutations (unknowable if random) and we do know that, given a similar environment, extreme genotypes reduce survivability, yet we also know that a large variety of genotypes survive just fine in any population.

Fitness is never defined independently of survivability – this renders the fitness concept redundant especially since survivability can be measured while fitness cannot. Evolutionary Fitness is defined as the quantitative representation of natural and sexual selection (reproductive success) of a genotype or phenotype in a given environment. “Survival of the fittest” is interpreted as: “Survival of the form (phenotypic or genotypic) that will leave the most copies of itself in successive generations.” Not only is survivability the only measure, but survivability also changes with the environment.

Natural Selection is Intelligent Selection which is always done by an Intelligent Selector such as Darwin’s breeder which is an intelligent and willful player that takes intentional actions to reach preset goals. Predators, plants, birds, insects or bacteria, all show intelligence and the willful pursuit of predetermined goals. When interacting with the inert environment, organisms self-select rather than being selected by this environment. As soon as the organism dies and becomes part of the lifeless universe, all selection of that entity ceases.

Selection is limited to a narrow set of possible adaptations – what is not there, cannot be selected. Among the most common adaptations are body color/size/shape, hair type, antibiotic/chemical resistance, and behavior, and even these are limited in scope. Farmers would like to grow walking chicken breasts the size of hogs that grow much faster and come in various flavors, but this is not happening despite their best efforts. Antibiotic resistant bacteria still cannot survive extreme temperatures and chemical concentrations and their resistance decreases when the stimulus is removed. Rabbits cannot turn green when hopping over grass and white just over winter, despite the clear advantage such camouflage would bring. Size of tails, horns, beaks, trees, etc. are all stable over time as tradeoffs limit their growth. Human intelligence, flying, swimming, venom, and all other desirable capabilities remain restricted to specific organisms. Domestication has greatly helped mankind’s progress, but it has not changed the nature of the target animals and plants despite intensive efforts to accelerate their evolution. Instead, humans only enhanced the built in characteristics of domestic organisms and simply did without – a huge civilization disadvantage – when those plants and animals were unavailable. Hence, selection does not “design”, is limited in scope to a few available characteristics, and is reversed as soon as the selection pressure ends.

Extinct organism were not flawed and their features were not “selected away”. Most characteristics of the extinct survive just fine in current organisms of which some changed so little over time they are called living fossils. Sure, the mammal eye might provide superior vision to insect eye, but nothing comes for free and tradeoffs ensure both survive. Organisms that have completely vanished cannot be characterized as flawed and it would not take much imagination to see them thriving in a current landscape. The environment may have changed dramatically over time, however on a macro scale, the environment affected all organisms making the “natural selection” explanation highly doubtful regarding why some organisms survived in their old form, why some went extinct and why others would survive in a changed form. Humans and apes shared the same environment in Africa so common genotype would not have caused our dramatic differences just as lions are not that different than leopard, the cheetah and the others.

What if anything should replace Natural Selection? Humans have applied the most intensive and targeted selective pressure on us and others with great results for our existence. Yet we have not transformed even one organism into another – not even the lowly eColi after decades of laboratory work (Lenski). Our dogs are still basic canines and our cats are still basic felines, not much different than their wild cousins. If anything, we had to adapt to them rather than them to us. The finch, the moth, the antibiotic resistant bacteria are still the original organisms, their hailed changes having reverted or proven simple adaptations. We are no smarter, more powerful or longer living (in absolute) than out primitive ancestors. Selection is not transformative, much less creative.

Humans would apply the Natural Selection method if feasible. But we don’t because it isn’t. A Natural Selection software would use a random generator and a selection criteria to maximize survivability in an available niche. For instance, a family vehicle should optimize the transport function (survivability) given a set of environmental constraints (regulations) and an existing design as starting point. Random minute changes could be tested and retained if the transport function is improved. However, this method can only remove minor oversights but will never create any new designs. Any significant departure such as a new fuel, material or environment either results in a suboptimal design, or requires a cascade of changes to improve the survivability function. That is why the auto industry, like most other industries, introduces minor redesign annually and major revamps every few years. And while even the minor improvements must come in harmonized packages rather than one off (to reduce negative ramifications), in the absence of those major redesigns a firm would shortly go extinct.

Designs do not transform into better designs without crossing an inevitable optimization gap. Given a certain environment, once a design is optimized for a certain function, it becomes suboptimal as soon as the function, the structure, or the materials changes. Until the new design is optimized for that particular change, it remains inferior to an old design already optimized to that environment. Humans optimize new designs (with multidimensional differences from previous versions) conceptually before abruptly replacing old designs. A Darwinist biologic gradual design transition would thus be impossible hence never observed in nature. Had the compound eye been optimized first, a transition to non-compound eye would inevitably had to be suboptimal for a while and vice versa. Only if all eye designs had started from the same point, each following an independent path and at the same pace would we have so many different designs today, each optimized for its function. This however implies a coordinated original grand design incompatible with Darwinian evolution.

Pro-Con Notes

Con: What about organic design? Isn’t that natural selection at work?

Pro: No. This is just iterative optimization of a given design. In this case, the wing shape, the material, the environmental forces and the optimization target are all given. The algorithm will not generate a new wing shape or material and it will stop converging as soon as the environment is less than perfectly defined. In addition, this design is radically different from the previous one, and the next iteration will certainly be radically different than this one (no gradualism).

Con: You just don’t understand natural selection.

Pro: If “natural selection” were hard to understand it would not be taught to young children. Instead, “natural selection” is more like very bad street magic where the bus is covered with the cloth and we then are asked to imagine it disappeared without even removing the cloth and showing us the empty space.

663 Replies to “Natural Selection – Evolution Magic”

  1. colewd
    Ignored
    says:

    Interesting point on wing design.

    Flapping

    Birds’ wings flap with an up-and-down motion. This propels them forward. The entire wingspan has to be at the right angle of attack, which means the wings have to twist (and do so automatically) with each downward stroke to keep aligned with the direction of travel.

  2. John Harshman John Harshman
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd:
    John Harshman,
    It appears to take several coordinated features that allow flight to occur.Wing muscle structure, how the mid point bone joints work, controlled change in feather orientation to reduce drag when the wing is in the upward motion.

    Sigh. Descent into word salad again. Can I also point out that you never answer any question I ask you?

    Wing muscle structure has in fact changes radically, but over millions of years, in the evolution of flight, and most of the changes happened after flight had already been achieved, yet another refutation of your central claim that this is all completely coordinated and inseparable. Not sure what a “mid point bone joint” is. Nor what “controlled changes in feather orientation” you are talking about.

    If the previous adaptations that led to flight were random then I would agree with you but they may not be.

    You snipped out most of my argument. What do you mean by “random”, why would a designer make a bird by accumulating small changes over millions of years, thousands of species, many of them off the line leading to birds? Is this the sort of creator you want to posit?

    The other issue is loss of flight in birds if that ever really occurred.If flight parameters were loose then this would be less likely.

    Please present arguments rather than naked assertions. Why would this be less likely?

    How did you calculate 100 million years?

    You first. Answer my questions and I’ll answer yours.

    You had brought up the designers strategy as an issue.We should look at the big picture here not just a single transition.

    All these transitions require lots of new genetic information.I don’t think interim stages are going to help the blind watchmaker solve this problem.

    Unfortunately, all the cases you brought up argue against your claims, but you won’t engage with any of that. Please define “genetic information” and tell me how you are able to determine how much a transition requires. Tell me why interim stages don’t help.

  3. J-Mac
    Ignored
    says:

    Why the Selection is called natural?
    What gave the Natural Selection the selective, advantages properties to choose?

  4. dazz dazz
    Ignored
    says:

    J-Mac: Why the Selection is called natural?

    To piss you off, and it works! ha!

  5. J-Mac
    Ignored
    says:

    dazz: To piss you off, and it works! ha!

    How does hashish fit into this natural selection scenario?
    Drogas, hoder de culo? Una selection natural?
    Naturalmente… Pro su pesto…

  6. dazz dazz
    Ignored
    says:

    J-Mac: How does hashish fit into this natural selection scenario?
    Drogas, hoder de culo?Una selection natural?
    Naturalmente… Pro su pesto…

    Your spanish is almost as pathetic as your reasoning skills, “hoder de culo”? LMFAO!

  7. Nonlin.org
    Ignored
    says:

    John Harshman: I encounter this all the time from creationists: “We don’t know everything; therefore we know nothing”, or words to that effect.

    What has this to do with anything? I am showing that we do know “Natural Selection” fails. Do you have any arguments or not?

    Adapa: assertions somehow negate 150+ years’ of positive scientific evidence

    150 years of nonsense must end sooner or later. What exactly is your “fitness” function? Your “elephant and a shark” comment goes to show you’re a total moron that doesn’t understand anything. Begone.

  8. Nonlin.org
    Ignored
    says:

    Corneel: You know, if you dream up your own definitions, it becomes rather easy to argue against them. But this definition is yours and yours alone.

    You argue against Google:
    phe·no·type
    ˈfēnəˌtīp/Submit
    nounBIOLOGY
    the set of observable characteristics of an individual resulting from the interaction of its genotype with the environment.
    …and https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phenotype
    Corneel:You claimed that fitness is never defined independently of survival. Yet, in a paper that is being discussed here in several posts at TSZ, fitness IS defined independently of survival.

    Even there, if you dig deeper you will find the link to survival. Is this cheap shot all you can produce?

  9. John Harshman John Harshman
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org: What has this to do with anything? I am showing that we do know “Natural Selection” fails. Do you have any arguments or not?

    You aren’t showing any such thing. You have argued that because phenotype can’t be absolutely quantified to infinite accuracy, we can’t study phenotypes, and that because we can’t absolutely quantify fitness, we can’t study fitness. That’s a form of the argument I mentioned. Now, the fact is that we can estimate all those things closely enough for practical purposes.

  10. Nonlin.org
    Ignored
    says:

    Entropy: If phenotypes were unknowable we could not tell the difference between a shark and an elephant, if the environment was unknowable we couldn’t tell the difference between a tundra and a savanna. Here you’re showing not just ignorance of biology and ecology, but, again, tremendous conceptual problems.

    Phenotype is supposed to be the SET of observable characteristics per Google. Go fight Google. But more likely you don’t understand what a ‘SET’ is.

    Where do you see “unknowable environment”? Your reading comprehension is abysmal at best.

    What school of morons anointed you a “scientist”? Must be a big one since there’s so many of you out there.

  11. Nonlin.org
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    says:

    Corneel: There is no reason to borrow the Darwinistas language. No microevolution, no NS, no “fitness”, “phenotype”, “speciation”, etc. How can the Darwinistas take you seriously when you accept and operate in their mind frame and only seek fault at the edges when their whole mind frame is rotten?

    If one decides to reject all common ground beforehand, any discussion will become rather tiresome indeed. Not very constructive to one’s own position either.

    What “common ground”? The only thing common has to be the observable. And one thing we have never observed is exquisite design just popping into existence for no reason whatsoever, aka the evolutionary mythology.

  12. Neil Rickert
    Ignored
    says:

    Moved a couple of posts to guano.

  13. Entropy Entropy
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org: Phenotype is supposed to be the SET of observable characteristics per Google. Go fight Google. But more likely you don’t understand what a ‘SET’ is.

    Are you stupid enough not to know that we can tell apart a whale from an elephant because of their observable characteristics? More likely you don’t know what observable means you ridiculously arrogant imbecile.

    Nonlin.org: Where do you see “unknowable environment”? Your reading comprehension is abysmal at best.

    From your own wording you imbecile. Take a look:

    Nonlin.org: In addition phenotype is unknowable and theoretical and environment just as much.

    You should think thrice before questioning anybody else’s reading comprehension. You’re words backfired and blew up your own ass.

  14. Nonlin.org
    Ignored
    says:

    John Harshman: You have argued that because phenotype can’t be absolutely quantified to infinite accuracy, we can’t study phenotypes, and that because we can’t absolutely quantify fitness, we can’t study fitness. That’s a form of the argument I mentioned. Now, the fact is that we can estimate all those things closely enough for practical purposes.

    Finally an intelligent reply! Thanks.

    It’s not about accuracy. Take the zebra stripes – just one element of the infinity of their phenotype – yet we’re still guessing why: https://www.livescience.com/49447-zebras-stripes-cooling.html . Are the stripes essential to survival? If not, what other phenotype elements matter to zebra survival? Would they survive somewhere in South America? Where? Would a horse survive where zebras live? What kind of horse? You must agree we can’t say anything about how and why the zebra phenotype happened. Also you can’t say anything about their “fitness” and what would change their “fitness” and how much. More or less, all you can do is observe they survive. No! You can’t “estimate all those things closely enough for practical purposes”.

    And this is not the only reason why Natural Selection fails. Here is a preliminary summary for your convenience – feel free to address:
    1. Natural Selection fails its definition – survival is not directly tied to phenotype
    2. “Blind, mindless, purposeless, natural, and process” qualifiers fail
    3. Phenotype is an unstable infinite set (hence unknowable and theoretical)
    4. Fitness concept is redundant since never defined independently of survival
    5. “Selection” is Survival
    6. The only selection is Intelligent Selection – always done by an Intelligent Selector
    7. Selection is limited to a narrow set of adaptations – one cannot selected what is not there
    8. Selection and Mutations lack creativity, therefore cannot explain body designs
    9. We do not observe “divergence of character” but ‘limited variations around a mean’
    10. Extinct organism were not flawed and their features were not “selected away”
    11. Intelligent Selection should replace Natural Selection but only if we ever transmutate organisms
    12. Humans do not apply Natural Selection because it doesn’t work
    13. Designs must cross an inevitable optimization gap making evolution impossible

  15. Neil Rickert
    Ignored
    says:

    Moved another to guano. You can try removing one word and reposting.

  16. Entropy Entropy
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org: What “common ground”? The only thing common has to be the observable. And one thing we have never observed is exquisite design just popping into existence for no reason whatsoever, aka the creationist mythology.

    Fixed it for you.

  17. Nonlin.org
    Ignored
    says:

    Entropy,

    You’re the worst retard out here. And pathetic when grasping for straws.

    The essay on this page shows no such passage: “In addition phenotype is unknowable and theoretical and environment just as much.” Not that it’s wrong, but not here.

    Yes, the environment changes constantly so there is no “environment” to which the phenotype “fits”. All it takes is one extra cold night to wipe out an entire population.

  18. Nonlin.org
    Ignored
    says:

    Entropy: exquisite design just popping into existence for no reason whatsoever, aka the creationist mythology.

    You’re laughable. Creation is not “popping into existence”. Witness the manufacturing of your own car. It is designed and manufactured just as you are. Too bad you’re scrap material.

    Only Darwinistas think exquisite designs pops into existence in “Blind, Unguided and Purposeless Process” – qualifiers utterly unsupported by evidence and incompatible with any Process, that is: “a set of Steps Taken towards an End”.

  19. Entropy Entropy
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org:
    The essay on this page shows no such passage: “In addition phenotype is unknowable and theoretical and environment just as much.” Not that it’s wrong, but not here.

    It’s in one of your own answers. Just follow the link. Just click on your name in the quote. Or click here and check the last paragraph you wrote there. It’s not that hard.

    Nonlin.org:
    Yes, the environment changes constantly so there is no “environment” to which the phenotype “fits”. All it takes is one extra cold night to wipe out an entire population.

    If you do think that the environment is unknowable, then why the hell did you ask where I got that from? Why did you blame me for your own thinking? Why did you question my reading comprehension without reading the very paragraph you wrote and I quoted verbatim? Seems like it’s you who grasps at straws.

    You have some serious problems, so I’m leaving you alone.

  20. Nonlin.org
    Ignored
    says:

    Entropy: If you do think that the environment is unknowable, then why the hell did you ask where I got that from?

    It’s not in the essay. You are so pathetic and funny grasping at straws.

    So you don’t agree the environment changes constantly therefore there is no “environment” to which the phenotype “fits”? You disagree that all it takes is one extra cold night to wipe out an entire population regardless of the “phenotype”?

  21. Adapa
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin have your doctors ever prescribed for you large does of lithium? It may help.

    If not try Quaaludes.

  22. John Harshman John Harshman
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org: Finally an intelligent reply! Thanks.

    Have you considered the possibility that you reap what you sow? Your abrasive, arrogant stye invites abrasive, arrogant replies. Try a serious argument, you may get serious replies.

    It’s not about accuracy. Take the zebra stripes – just one element of the infinity of their phenotype – yet we’re still guessing why: https://www.livescience.com/49447-zebras-stripes-cooling.html . Are the stripes essential to survival? If not, what other phenotype elements matter to zebra survival? Would they survive somewhere in South America? Where? Would a horse survive where zebras live? What kind of horse? You must agree we can’t say anything about how and why the zebra phenotype happened.

    No, I don’t agree. we can say something, just not everything.

    Also you can’t say anything about their “fitness” and what would change their “fitness” and how much. More or less, all you can do is observe they survive. No! You can’t “estimate all those things closely enough for practical purposes”.

    Fitness is generally used as a comparative measure within populations. You seem to be using it in some other way. Of course you can measure the fitness of a zebra, though it takes a lot of work. Smaller individuals with shorter generations are certainly simpler. I don’t see why you think selection fails.

    And this is not the only reason why Natural Selection fails. Here is a preliminary summary for your convenience – feel free to address:
    1. Natural Selection fails its definition – survival is not directly tied to phenotype

    Yeah, I have no idea what you mean by that. Why survival rather than reproductive success? And are you talking about the stochastic component of selection, its dependence on environmental particulars, or something else entirely?

    2. “Blind, mindless, purposeless, natural, and process” qualifiers fail

    Yeah, I don’t know what that means either.

    3. Phenotype is an unstable infinite set (hence unknowable and theoretical)

    We’ve discussed that. It’s enough that we can measure relevant aspects of phenotype with reasonable accuracy and precision.

    4. Fitness concept is redundant since never defined independently of survival

    I don’t think that’s what “redundant” means; I think you mean “tautological”. Fitness is measured by survival (or really by reproductive success; not sure why you reject that), but in practice what we study is the link between reproductive success and some aspect of phenotype or genotype over a large number of individuals.

    5. “Selection” is Survival

    Not clear what you’re trying to say there.

    6. The only selection is Intelligent Selection – always done by an Intelligent Selector

    So your objection is just to the word? It’s a metaphor. What does that have to do with the validity of the phenomenon.

    7. Selection is limited to a narrow set of adaptations – one cannot selected what is not there

    What is the connection between the two parts of that sentence? Of course the second part is true, but so what?

    8. Selection and Mutations lack creativity, therefore cannot explain body designs

    Again, no apparent connection between the two parts of that sentence, unless you’re relying on the word “designs” to carry your point.

    9. We do not observe “divergence of character” but ‘limited variations around a mean’

    Yeah, that may be what you observe. It’s not what I observe. Of course I do phylogenetics, which is where the best evidence against your claim can be found.

    10. Extinct organism were not flawed and their features were not “selected away”

    That’s what we call a strawman. You may have forgotten that environment affects fitness. “Flawed” is a human-imposed value judgment that doesn’t go well with science.

    11. Intelligent Selection should replace Natural Selection but only if we ever transmutate organisms

    No idea what you’re trying to say there, again.

    12. Humans do not apply Natural Selection because it doesn’t work

    Humans don’t apply natural selection because if humans do it we call it artificial selection. Now, since humans are part of the environment, I would consider artificial selection to be a form of natural selection. Humans also apply natural selection by accident, as for example when we create antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria.

    13. Designs must cross an inevitable optimization gap making evolution impossible

    Once more I have no idea what you’re trying to say with that one.

    Incidentally, I think you’re really bad at expressing yourself.

  23. colewd
    Ignored
    says:

    John Harshman,

    Wing muscle structure has in fact changes radically, but over millions of years, in the evolution of flight, and most of the changes happened after flight had already been achieved, yet another refutation of your central claim that this is all completely coordinated and inseparable.

    You did not refute my argument here. The pieces required for flight can change over time but that does not refute their must be a coordination of capability to achieve flight. Weight, body structure, wing size, wing shape are all examples. If the wing shape changes flight can be lost. If weight increases flight can be lost.

    You snipped out most of my argument. What do you mean by “random”, why would a designer make a bird by accumulating small changes over millions of years, thousands of species, many of them off the line leading to birds? Is this the sort of creator you want to posit?

    If I were to say that motivation and design strategy is irrelevant to the argument, would that answer your questions?

    Bill:The other issue is loss of flight in birds if that ever really occurred.If flight parameters were loose then this would be less likely.

    John:Please present arguments rather than naked assertions. Why would this be less likely?

    If a bird were to have a 200% weight gain and could still fly vs a 20% weight gain and lose flight the loss of flight would be a rarer event in the first case. The same argument could be made about wing structure and other parameters.
    John Harshman,

    Unfortunately, all the cases you brought up argue against your claims, but you won’t engage with any of that. Please define “genetic information” and tell me how you are able to determine how much a transition requires. Tell me why interim stages don’t help.

    An example would be how much genetic information is required to produce a spliceosome that would partially allow the transition to a eukaryotic cell. We can find innovation like this throughout evolutionary history and estimate the amount of genetic information required. Gpuccio has done this work over at uncommon descent.

  24. Adapa
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd:
    John Harshman,

    You did not refute my argument here.The pieces required for flight can change over time but that does not refute their must be a coordination of capability to achieve flight.Weight, body structure, wing size, wing shape are all examples.If the wing shape changes flight can be lost.If weight increases flight can be lost.

    Natural selection will still weed out those whose wing shape change or weight change is deleterious to their survival. You just won’t be honest about this no matter how many times you are corrected.

    An example would be how much genetic information is required to produce a spliceosome that would partially allow the transition to a eukaryotic cell.We can find innovation like this throughout evolutionary history and estimate the amount of genetic information required.Gpuccio has done this work over at uncommon descent.

    Genetic information isn’t a conserved quantity and new genetic information is easily produced through genetic variations and selection filtering from the environment. That another critical point you’ve had explained ad nauseum but still dishonestly ignore.

  25. John Harshman John Harshman
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd:
    John Harshman,

    You did not refute my argument here.The pieces required for flight can change over time but that does not refute their must be a coordination of capability to achieve flight.Weight, body structure, wing size, wing shape are all examples.If the wing shape changes flight can be lost.If weight increases flight can be lost.

    I’m not sure what argument you’re trying to make. Some changes will prevent flight, others will enable it. Selection can move the phenotype in whatever direction, flight or non-flight, is advantageous at the time. Your argument can only work if there’s a sudden threshold of multiple, simultaneous, large, and very specific changes needed. The fossil record contradicts that claim. Therefore your argument can’t work.

    If I were to say that motivation and design strategy is irrelevant to the argument,would that answer your questions?

    Not in the slightest.

    If a bird were to have a 200% weight gain and could still fly vs a 20% weight gain and lose flight the loss of flight would be a rarer event in the first case.The same argument could be made about wing structure and other parameters.

    I don’t see the relevance of the difference between 200 and 20 here. You claims would seem to require approximately zero tolerance. I also don’t see the relevance of loss of flight.

    An example would be how much genetic information is required to produce a spliceosome that would partially allow the transition to a eukaryotic cell.

    How much is that?

    We can find innovation like this throughout evolutionary history and estimate the amount of genetic information required.Gpuccio has done this work over at uncommon descent.

    Great. What did he do and what is the required amount? Also, how can you tell how much is too much to happen naturally?

  26. Corneel Corneel
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org: You argue against Google:
    phe·no·type
    ˈfēnəˌtīp/Submit
    nounBIOLOGY
    the set of observable characteristics of an individual resulting from the interaction of its genotype with the environment.

    Oh noes, I am arguing against Google. Oh wait, no I’m not. That is not the definition you offered; I don see any mention of the phenotype being an “unstable infinite set” in there. Shall we also visit some definitions from the actual literature on popgen and evolutionary biology? Here is one definition saying the phenotype is the collection of traits an organism manifests:

    Individual organisms are characterized by their genotype, or their genetic constitution, and by their phenotype, or the traits they manifest. There is often a complex relationship between genotype and phenotype, because phenotype may depend on the interactions of different genes as well as effects of the environment
    Principles of Population Genetics, 4th ed. Hartl & Clark

    No mention of an “unstable infinite set” here. And here is one that spells out that phenotype need not refer to the complete set of traits, but that “any part of the organism that is not DNA can be referred to as phenotypic”

    The phenotype is the expression of the genotype in interaction with the environment during the course of growth and development of the organism. Strictly speaking, any part of the organism that is not DNA can be referred to as phenotypic. All aspects of the phenotype are the product of interactions between genes and environment. The life history of an organisms is one of the most comprehensive examples of a phenotype, for it results from processes stretching from molecular biology to ecology
    The Evolution of Life Histories – Stephen Stearns

    None of these definitions tells us that the set is infinite, unstable, unknowable or theoretical. That’s just you making stuff up

    Nonlin.org: Corneel:You claimed that fitness is never defined independently of survival. Yet, in a paper that is being discussed here in several posts at TSZ, fitness IS defined independently of survival.

    Even there, if you dig deeper you will find the link to survival. Is this cheap shot all you can produce?

    I read the paper and the OPs, but I must have missed that. Would you be so good to point out where you find this link?

  27. Corneel Corneel
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org: What “common ground”? The only thing common has to be the observable. And one thing we have never observed is exquisite design just popping into existence for no reason whatsoever, aka the evolutionary mythology.

    I told you. If we cannot observe the phenotype of an organism, we cannot observe its “exquisite design” either. That, too, becomes unknowable.

  28. Corneel Corneel
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org: It’s not about accuracy. Take the zebra stripes – just one element of the infinity of their phenotype – yet we’re still guessing why: https://www.livescience.com/49447-zebras-stripes-cooling.html . Are the stripes essential to survival? If not, what other phenotype elements matter to zebra survival? Would they survive somewhere in South America? Where? Would a horse survive where zebras live? What kind of horse? You must agree we can’t say anything about how and why the zebra phenotype happened. Also you can’t say anything about their “fitness” and what would change their “fitness” and how much. More or less, all you can do is observe they survive. No! You can’t “estimate all those things closely enough for practical purposes”.

    And there we are: You have admitted that the color pattern of a zebra’s coat is part of its phenotype. It is not unstable or theoretical at all, and I doubt there is an infinity of stripes. Well done!

    The question whether this is adaptive is a different issue, of course.

  29. J-Mac
    Ignored
    says:

    Regarding the phenomenon of natural selection;
    How did it evolve or appear?
    When did it evolve or appear?
    What I mean by my questions is: when does natural selection have initiated its influence on the evolution of life and how? And by what mechanism did life evolve before natural could select?

  30. Adapa
    Ignored
    says:

    J-Mac:
    Regarding the phenomenon of natural selection;
    How did it evolve or appear?
    When did it evolve or appear?
    What I mean by my questions is: when does natural selection have initiated its influence on the evolution of life and how?And by what mechanism did life evolve before natural could select?

    Natural selection is a phenomenon which occurs whenever you have a population of imperfectly self-replicating entities competing for limited resources required to reproduce. These imperfect self replicators don’t have to be life as we know it now. The process of NS will occur with prebiotic self replicating molecules too.

    You question is like asking when “falling” began with respect to gravity.

  31. colewd
    Ignored
    says:

    John Harshman,

    Your argument can only work if there’s a sudden threshold of multiple, simultaneous, large, and very specific changes needed. The fossil record contradicts that claim. Therefore your argument can’t work.

    The fossil records only shows similar features not features that can come together and allow the animal to fly. It also does not show us the cause of the origin of those features.

    I don’t see the relevance of the difference between 200 and 20 here. You claims would seem to require approximately zero tolerance. I also don’t see the relevance of loss of flight.

    You have claimed that evolution can account for both loss and gain of flight, however the tolerance conditions that favor loss of flight do not favor gain of flight.

    How much is that?

    Enough information to build 200 functional proteins in order to form a single protein complex.

    Great. What did he do and what is the required amount? Also, how can you tell how much is too much to happen naturally?

    Lets make this a later discussion.

  32. Adapa
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd:

    The fossil records only shows similar features not features that can come together and allow the animal to fly.

    Still lying about and avoiding the evidence provided I see.

    It also does not show us the cause of the origin of those features.

    But our understanding of genetics combined with the fossil record shows the origins clearly.

    You have claimed that evolution can account for both loss and gain of flight, however the tolerance conditions that favor loss of flight do not favor gain of flight.

    (facepalm) C’mon Billy, no one can be that stupid. There are different environments at different locations and different times. Some favor the evolution of flight, some favor the loss of flight. Do you really think there was only ONE unchanging environment for all species at all times??

    Enough information to build 200 functional proteins in order to form a single protein complex.

    What about it? There is no constraint on how much new information the environment can add.

  33. John Harshman John Harshman
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd:
    John Harshman,

    The fossil records only shows similar features not features that can come together and allow the animal to fly.It also does not show us the cause of theorigin of those features.

    Focus. Your claim was that they all have to come together at once as a design for flying. They don’t. That was my point. Undesigned evolution makes sense of the pattern. You have yet to present a design scenario that makes any sense at all.

    You have claimed that evolution can account for both loss and gain of flight, however the tolerance conditions that favor loss of flight do not favor gain of flight.

    Why? It would seem that tolerance would work equally in both directions.

    Enough information to build 200 functional proteins in order to form a single protein complex.

    Not an answer, and nothing to do with flight either.

    Lets make this a later discussion.

    I don’t think you are capable of a discussion, now or later.

  34. GlenDavidson
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd: The fossil records only shows similar features not features that can come together and allow the animal to fly. It also does not show us the cause of the origin of those features.

    Really?

    They’re not derivative of the features of earlier organisms?

    They don’t fit into the nested hierarchy as entailed by evolution and nothing else?

    No, I’m afraid that the fossils have the exactly the characteristics that unintelligent evolution would produce. And of course they lack the characteristics that an intelligent creator would be expected to effect.

    Glen Davidson

  35. colewd
    Ignored
    says:

    John Harshman,

    Focus. Your claim was that they all have to come together at once as a design for flying. They don’t. That was my point. Undesigned evolution makes sense of the pattern.

    How is the pattern telling you that all the components such as bone weight and structure, feather design, muscle design, feather orientation, body design don’t have to come together in the right specifications to achieve flight. Until you have a configuration that flies you don’t know what the specification of the required components are. The argument for design is that an irreducibly complex set of components have come together to create flight.

    The flight feather originating in an earlier animal does nothing to discount the irreducible complexity argument.

    It only adds to the question of how the expression of an optimized flight feather occurred when there was no chance to optimize it for flight.

    Bill: You have claimed that evolution can account for both loss and gain of flight, however the tolerance conditions that favor loss of flight do not favor gain of flight.

    John: Why? It would seem that tolerance would work equally in both directions.

    If you have tolerance of plus or minus .1 lb (one tenth of a pound) for a bird to fly properly given its current body structure and wing structure. Gaining flight would be difficult however losing flight would be easy.

  36. Zachriel Zachriel
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd: How is the pattern telling you that all the components such as bone weight and structure, feather design, muscle design, feather orientation, body design don’t have to come together in the right specifications to achieve flight.

    Flight is actually fairly easy for any light-weight organism. Light-weight enough and the wind will take it, willing or not. Most everything that is needed for gliding, including limbs with feathers and the requisite motor functions, already existed in small theropods. Everything else is optimization.

  37. Adapa
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd:
    John Harshman,

    How is the pattern telling you that all the components such as bone weight and structure, feather design, muscle design, feather orientation, body design don’t have to come together in the right specifications to achieve flight.Until you have a configuration that flies you don’t know what the specification of the required components are.The argument for design is that an irreducibly complex set of components have come together to create flight.

    There is no one specification for “flight”. Flight ranges from simple unpowered gliding to hovering (hummingbirds) to altitude (37,000 ft. for vultures) to speed (240 MPH in a dive for falcons). The individuals in any species can have a wide variety of size/weight/feather characteristics and still be able to fly well enough to survive.

    The flight feather originating in an earlier animal does nothing to discount the irreducible complexity argument.

    That’s the IC argument science has already disproven and which has been dropped by almost every IDiot, except you.

    It only adds to the question of how the expression of an optimized flight feather occurred when there was no chance to optimize it for flight.

    Feathers didn’t need to be optimized for rudimentary flight. They only had to be “good enough” to get airborne. Optimization came much later.

    If you have tolerance of plus or minus .1 lb (one tenth of a pound) for a bird to fly properly given its current body structure and wing structure. Gaining flight would be difficult however losing flight would be easy.

    There is way more than that amount of variation in many bird species yet we don’t see millions of birds nose-diving to the ground after every meal.

    Seriously Billy, do you ever engage your brain even a little before posting this kind of nonsense?

  38. John Harshman John Harshman
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd:
    John Harshman,

    How is the pattern telling you that all the components such as bone weight and structure, feather design, muscle design, feather orientation, body design don’t have to come together in the right specifications to achieve flight.Until you have a configuration that flies you don’t know what the specification of the required components are.The argument for design is that an irreducibly complex set of components have come together to create flight.

    The flight feather originating in an earlier animal does nothing to discount the irreducible complexity argument.

    Christ, Bill, do you even understand your own argument? The IC argument for the unlikelihood of evolution requires that all the parts of an IC system must be combined at once, and that the system lacking any of the parts must have no function. If all the parts are assembled one by one over millions of years, the IC claim fails completely. Some of the parts came before flight, some after flight, and all the parts were modified gradually at various points.

    It only adds to the question of how the expression of an optimized flight feather occurred when there was no chance to optimize it for flight.

    No, the optimized flight feather arose gradually perhaps beginning with a glider, as shown by the fossil record.

    If you have tolerance of plus or minus .1 lb (one tenth of a pound) for a bird to fly properly given its current body structure and wing structure. Gaining flight would be difficult however losing flight would be easy.

    This is a caricature of evolution. And even under your scenario, gain and loss are equally easy; they’re just the reverse of the same steps. But your bigger problem is forgetting that we’re talking about variation within populations, acted upon by natural selection. Once a species has flight, and as long as flight is advantageous, individuals that lose the ability are selected out. Then again, if lack of flight is advantageous, individuals that lose the ability will be favored.

  39. colewd
    Ignored
    says:

    John Harshman,

    Christ, Bill, do you even understand your own argument? The IC argument for the unlikelihood of evolution requires that all the parts of an IC system must be combined at once, and that the system lacking any of the parts must have no function

    This is not the argument for irreducibly complexity.

    If you remove a part the system will cease functioning. Flight is the function and removal of flight feathers, muscle structure, bones, navigation, body structure (proper weight and shape) then flight will not occur.

    No, the optimized flight feather arose gradually perhaps beginning with a glider, as shown by the fossil record.

    This does not appear to be the case as Archaeopteryx had flight feathers.

    Do you know how many proteins are involved in building feathers as opposed to other structures that are made of keratins?

  40. John Harshman John Harshman
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd:
    John Harshman,

    This is not the argument for irreducibly complexity.

    If you remove a part the system will cease functioning.Flight is the function and removal of flight feathers, muscle structure, bones, navigation, body structure (proper weight and shape) then flight will not occur.

    Do you recognize a difference between “cease functioning” and “not have the same function”? It’s clear that the various parts of the modern avian flight system appeared gradually and at different times. Your argument for IC is a claim that flight couldn’t evolve because all the parts had to be there at once. All the parts weren’t there at once.

    This does not appear to be the case as Archaeopteryx had flight feathers.

    Yes, and it could fly. The gradual evolution came before that, in prior feathered theropods.

    Do you know how many proteins are involved in building feathers as opposed to other structures that are made of keratins?

    What do you mean by “involved”? Are you referring to structural proteins or regulatory proteins? And where are you going with this?

  41. colewd
    Ignored
    says:

    John Harshman,

    Do you recognize a difference between “cease functioning” and “not have the same function”?

    Yes, “cease functioning” is part the irreducibly complexity argument. “Parts having another function” is not.

    Your argument for IC is a claim that flight couldn’t evolve because all the parts had to be their at once.

    This is not the irreducible complexity argument. Flight is dependent on a set of complex parts working together to perform a specific function. It is dependent on all those parts working together. Similar parts may pre exist in different functions, but they have not been shown to work together in this specific function.

    Yes, and it could fly. The gradual evolution came before that, in prior feathered theropods.

    Do you have evidence that prior feathered theropods had flight feathers?

    What do you mean by “involved”? Are you referring to structural proteins or regulatory proteins? And where are you going with this?

    I am referring to structural proteins and regulatory proteins. It appears that greater then 50 proteins are required to construct feathers. This is greater the twice as many proteins required to construct other keratin structures like hair and nails.

  42. Nonlin.org
    Ignored
    says:

    John Harshman:
    1. Natural Selection fails its definition – survival is not directly tied to phenotype
    Yeah, I have no idea what you mean by that. Why survival rather than reproductive success?
    2. “Blind, mindless, purposeless, natural, and process” qualifiers fail
    Yeah, I don’t know what that means either.
    3. Phenotype is an unstable infinite set (hence unknowable and theoretical)
    We’ve discussed that. It’s enough that we can measure relevant aspects of phenotype with reasonable accuracy and precision.
    4. Fitness concept is redundant since never defined independently of survival
    I don’t think that’s what “redundant” means; I think you mean “tautological”. Fitness is measured by survival (or really by reproductive success; not sure why you reject that), but in practice what we study is the link between reproductive success and some aspect of phenotype or genotype over a large number of individuals.
    5. “Selection” is Survival
    Not clear what you’re trying to say there.
    6. The only selection is Intelligent Selection – always done by an Intelligent Selector
    So your objection is just to the word? It’s a metaphor. What does that have to do with the validity of the phenomenon.
    7. Selection is limited to a narrow set of adaptations – one cannot selected what is not there
    What is the connection between the two parts of that sentence? Of course the second part is true, but so what?
    8. Selection and Mutations lack creativity, therefore cannot explain body designs
    Again, no apparent connection between the two parts of that sentence, unless you’re relying on the word “designs” to carry your point.
    9. We do not observe “divergence of character” but ‘limited variations around a mean’
    Yeah, that may be what you observe. It’s not what I observe. Of course I do phylogenetics, which is where the best evidence against your claim can be found.
    10. Extinct organism were not flawed and their features were not “selected away”
    That’s what we call a strawman. You may have forgotten that environment affects fitness. “Flawed” is a human-imposed value judgment that doesn’t go well with science.
    11. Intelligent Selection should replace Natural Selection but only if we ever transmutate organisms
    No idea what you’re trying to say there, again.
    12. Humans do not apply Natural Selection because it doesn’t work
    Humans don’t apply natural selection because if humans do it we call it artificial selection. Now, since humans are part of the environment, I would consider artificial selection to be a form of natural selection. Humans also apply natural selection by accident, as for example when we create antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria.
    13. Designs must cross an inevitable optimization gap making evolution impossible
    Once more I have no idea what you’re trying to say with that one.

    1. You can disagree all you want. Survival of the species is reproductive success. Whatever you like.
    2. That’s the materialistic claim. Is your claim different? How?
    3. No, it’s not enough. What is “relevant”? Whatever you think relevant is not explaining zebra or anything else: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080812135654.htm
    4. Redundant: (of words or data) able to be omitted without loss of meaning or function. Superfluous. You can’t read or understand the essay? I give a clear example (2nd paragraph) why phenotype is not directly tied to survival (reproductive success). Why do you insist?
    5. The only measure of “selection” is survival.
    6. What phenomenon? I am dismantling the “phenomenon” and the distinction is important. Do you agree that any selection is only done by the living on themselves or other living?
    7. Can’t get from ape to human (and etc.) by selecting. We have selected dogs for a long time and they’re still c. lupus, not “c. felis”. Any dog/cat/etc. breed is just narrow adaptation. Yes, even the cruciferous.
    8. All organisms are exquisite designs that are in no way explained by the “natural selection” narrative.
    9. You misinterpret based on your prejudice. Example? How would you know they’re not ‘limited variations around a mean’?
    10. Not so fast. Your narrative talks about “benefic” (kind of opposite to ‘flawed’ or ‘deleterious’) mutations and “optimization”. They absolutely are anthropic and that’s your problem.
    11. Darwin promised you transmutation of species, not reversible adaptations. Where is it?
    12. Variations + “Natural selection” are supposed to give you new designs. This is not how humans design. Antibiotic-resistance is a reversible adaptation – go ahead and try – release AR into the wild and confirm AR shortly goes away without a trace. Read Pro/Con notes to essay.
    13. Can’t go from lizard to bird by improving. You must go through an intermediate phase where you’re worse off than both (the gap). And that’s when you go extinct before getting to the other side. Humans jump over the gap by redesigning. It’s all explained, but you don’t read or don’t understand.

  43. Nonlin.org
    Ignored
    says:

    Corneel: “unstable infinite set” here. And here is one that spells out that phenotype need not refer to the complete set of traits, but that “any part of the organism that is not DNA can be referred to as phenotypic”

    “Unstable infinite set” is my claim and I stand by it. Phenotypic is not phenotype. See? Different words.
    Your alternative definition doesn’t make a difference.

  44. Nonlin.org
    Ignored
    says:

    “Natural selection” proponents must answer these simple questions – pick any biologic entity including populations:
    1. What is that biologic entity’s phenotype?
    2. What is its environment?
    3. What is its fitness function?
    4. What is the relationship between its phenotype, environment, fitness, and survival/reproductive success?

    If you don’t have an answer to these four questions, you must reply in your little handwriting or hand typing: “There is no such thing as Natural Selection!”
    And don’t reply with any other BS.

  45. dazz dazz
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org,

    derp

  46. John Harshman John Harshman
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org: 1.You can disagree all you want. Survival of the species is reproductive success. Whatever you like.

    I don’t know what you meant by that. “Whatever you like”? You seem to be confusing survival of the species with survival of individuals with reproductive success of individuals. Try being less elliptical in your claims, and perhaps that would clarify.

    2.That’s the materialistic claim. Is your claim different? How?

    What part of “I don’t know what that means” is unclear to you? The proper response is to explain what that means. What fails, and why?

    3.No, it’s not enough. What is “relevant”? Whatever you think relevant is not explaining zebra or anything else: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080812135654.htm

    Is English your native language? I’m suspecting not. In the case of zebras, the relevant aspects are the presence, absence, and/or sizes and spacing of stripes. These can be characterized with no need to evoke infinite phenotypes.

    4.Redundant: (of words or data) able to be omitted without loss of meaning or function. Superfluous. You can’t read or understand the essay? I give a clear example (2nd paragraph) why phenotype is not directly tied to survival (reproductive success). Why do you insist?

    I think your essay makes no sense. Your example is in fact not clear. If all you’re saying is that fitness depends on environment, that comes as no surprise to anyone and doesn’t invalidate the concept.

    5.The only measure of “selection” is survival.

    Why do you say that? Reproductive success and survival are not the same thing.

    6.What phenomenon? I am dismantling the “phenomenon” and the distinction is important. Do you agree that any selection is only done by the living on themselves or other living?

    No, I don’t agree. That sentence was word salad. The phenomenon is differential reproductive success of individuals causally correlated with genotype. It actually does happen.

    7.Can’t get from ape to human (and etc.) by selecting. We have selected dogs for a long time and they’re still c. lupus, not “c. felis”. Any dog/cat/etc. breed is just narrow adaptation. Yes, even the cruciferous.

    How do you know you can’t get from ape to human by selecting? Since we are clearly related to chimpanzees, how did that happen? Humans differ from chimps by a fairly small number of mutations, approximately 40 million, almost all of them in junk DNA with no effect on phenotype. At most a few thousand are relevant.

    8.All organisms are exquisite designs that are in no way explained by the “natural selection” narrative.

    Have you considered that it’s only your lack of imagination that lets you think that?

    9.You misinterpret based on your prejudice. Example? How would you know they’re not ‘limited variations around a mean’?

    Again, I do phylogenetics. How do you know I’m misinterpreting? Let’s start with this. Do you think those species are unrelated? How do you account for the transformations among them?

    10.Not so fast. Your narrative talks about “benefic” (kind of opposite to ‘flawed’ or ‘deleterious’) mutations and “optimization”. They absolutely are anthropic and that’s your problem.

    You really need to work on your English. My narrative, as you put it, talks about alleles having various fitnesses in various environments. “Beneficial” and “deleterious” are by comparison with other alleles present in the population. Nothing about “flawed”. That sort of thing is measured, not invented.

    11.Darwin promised you transmutation of species, not reversible adaptations. Where is it?

    Easily discerned from phylogenetic analysis, as in the paper I cited above. Of course major commonly takes quite a long time, generally many thousands of years, and is best seen in data that assay deep time.

    12.Variations + “Natural selection” are supposed to give you new designs. This is not how humans design. Antibiotic-resistance is a reversible adaptation – go ahead and try – release AR into the wild and confirm AR shortly goes away without a trace. Read Pro/Con notes to essay.

    You just made that example up. Of course evolution isn’t how humans design; why should it be?

    13.Can’t go from lizard to bird by improving. You must go through an intermediate phase where you’re worse off than both (the gap). And that’s when you go extinct before getting to the other side. Humans jump over the gap by redesigning. It’s all explained, but you don’t read or don’t understand.

    I assume you aren’t at all familiar with the fossil record of birds and dinosaurs, or you know that there are actual intermediates known, the sort you claim can’t exist. And note that the ancestors of birds were dinosaurs, not lizards. Your explanations are useless, because they make incorrect assumptions about what we observe. You’re explaining why bumblebees can’t fly. Why should anyone pay attention, when we can see bumblebees actually flying?

  47. John Harshman John Harshman
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org:
    “Natural selection” proponents must answer these simple questions – pick any biologic entity including populations:
    1. What is that biologic entity’s phenotype?
    2. What is its environment?
    3. What is its fitness function?
    4. What is the relationship between its phenotype, environment, fitness, and survival/reproductive success?

    If you don’t have an answer to these four questions, you must reply in your little handwriting or hand typing: “There is no such thing as Natural Selection!”
    And don’t reply with any other BS.

    Once again, this amounts to a claim that if we don’t know everything we therefore know nothing and that if we can’t measure something with infinite precision we can’t measure it at all. All those things can be estimated from data, at least in some situations, to an accuracy sufficient to draw conclusions. Check out any issue of Evolution. Have you ever read a scientific paper?

  48. John Harshman John Harshman
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd:
    John Harshman,

    Yes, “cease functioning” is part the irreducibly complexity argument.“Parts having another function” is not.

    This is not the irreducible complexity argument.Flight is dependent on a set of complex parts working together to perform a specific function.It is dependent on all those parts working together.Similar parts may pre exist in different functions, but they have not been shown to work together in this specific function.

    Your argument doesn’t work if it’s possible to assemble the pieces one by one, with some function resulting, even if flight only happens after the last piece is assembled.

    Do you have evidence that prior feathered theropods had flight feathers?

    Well, yes. Microraptor gui, for example, is evidence that flight feathers arose before Archaeopteryx. But that isn’t even necessary to demolish your ideas. Flight feathers could have been the last addition that allowed flight.

    I am referring to structural proteins and regulatory proteins.It appears that greater then 50 proteins are required to construct feathers. This is greater the twice as many proteins required to construct other keratin structures like hair and nails.

    Where do you get this information?

  49. Entropy Entropy
    Ignored
    says:

    Nonlin.org:
    “Natural selection” proponents must answer these simple questions

    Just because you say so? You have no grounds to demand answers, you have no background to understand answers, you have deep conceptual problems, you’re mentally immature, and you’re probably just some kid in the net.

    Natural selection is a concept the refers to actual phenomena.

    See? I have at least as much authority to make a claim as you. The only way to resolve the conflict would require you to be able to understand your mistakes, but you’re too arrogant and mentally immature to even recognize that you just might have made mistakes. Therefore there’s no way to communicate with you.

    Have a nice life. Come back if/when you grow up.

  50. Adapa
    Ignored
    says:

    colewd:

    Yes, “cease functioning” is part the irreducibly complexity argument.“Parts having another function” is not.

    Damn Billy, what part of natural evolutionary processes can produce IC systems do you not understand?

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