Sexual Selection Is Not Helpful to “Evolution”?

Can you say “breast implants”? Standard of beauty same as 30,000 years ago.
Venus of Willendorf

Can you say “breast implants”? Standard of beauty same as 30,000 years ago. That is more than 1,000 generations of NO “evolution”!

When no one can address their “fitness” function – because there is no such thing as a “fitness” function – it’s clear that “evolution” is dead in the water and nothing more needs to be added to disprove the failed hypothesis. And yet proponents never learn. Still, shooting the Darwinist fish in a barrel is fun. Enjoy.

  1. Sexual selection tries to explain sexual dimorphism and more. According to the theory, certain conspicuous physical traits, such as pronounced coloration, increased size, or striking adornments have “evolved” through sexual selection. The selecting sex often displays similar but subdued ornaments, indicating a sort of sexual selection leak from the selected to the selecting if the theory is true. Sexual selection is independent and often in conflict with “natural selection” when the sexually selected traits appear detrimental to general survival of the species. The extinct Irish Elk Deer is the standard example of detrimental sexual selection.
  2. At least two incompatible mating behaviors have been randomly grouped under “sexual selection”. One is “select the display”, while the other is “fight for mating rights”. The first one looks somewhat like selection. In the second case the dominant male mates indiscriminately, so there is no selection of the female and the female cannot turn down the dominant male, so there is no selection there either. Other schemes are “save the sperm” and “adopt a male”, both of which are not associated with any selection.
  3. Sexual selection would be just “natural selection” if such thing existed, contrary to Darwin’s contrived distinction. Fighting males for instance do not give females any choice. The “better fit” simply has more offspring by force. The female, predator, pray, parasites, community, and the environment in general, they all “select” the “best fit” whatever that means. If sexual selection were true, then there were also be predator selection as well as pray, parasite, community, kin, and so on ad infinitum selection, all conflicting with each other. Or to sum, no “natural selection”. No wonder Alfred Russel Wallace thought the idea of sexual selection as a driving force in “evolution” crazy.
  4. There is no sexual selection distinct from ‘Attraction to Universal Beauty’. Our tastes differ from bugs to humans in large part due to sensory limitations. But otherwise we all have the same standards of beauty. All organisms are intrigued by shapes, colors, contrasts, movements, sounds. We like other beautiful organism and inanimate objects. The cat likes the mouse and the mouse appreciates the cat’s beauty. Just as humans like both the dangerous lion and the cute, tasty pig. And everyone finds everyone’s babies more attractive. What animals like in one another is hard to tease due to their limited communication, but humans like the peacock as the peahen does, the lion as the lioness, the butterfly, the puppy, kitten, dragonfly, cricket, pup seal, cub bear, and many, many more as their own kind do. We can’t even get enough of the ugliest – pug dog, sphynx cat, lizards, snakes, vultures, and more – devoting much to bring them near us. And if we humans like them all, they would probably appreciate each other too across all species, were it not for fear, sensory and intelligence limitations. ”At least humans are not sexually attracted to animals” would be the counterargument. Would any human have sex with a peacock? A rabbit?? A cat, bat, fish (well, mermaid)??? Oh no, they would… as erotic animal costumes show. What a shame!
  5. Contrary to sexual selection that is expected to drift randomly, the standards of beauty remain essentially unchanged. Consider an “evolutionary” proto-bird. Million of years later, suppose the proto-bird split due to random events and various environments into the many bird species we see today. Then – to take one example – the current beautiful peacock is just the product of a series of random events and of its own female’s search for beauty. There is nothing in its current environment that demands that particular look. And why exactly is the peahen so desperate for that particular look? She isn’t. There is nothing in her little skull, genes, environment, or anywhere else that demands that particular look. She is only intrigued by beauty like the rest of us. Any beauty, not just the standard peacock beauty. If some peacock decides to build a beautiful bower (not suddenly, just amassing shiny objects in a first gen) or another peacock finds his voice, another becomes more protective, or goes for a modern look, she’s liable to fall for that new fellow and change the course of peafowl history. Which in the end turns out to be no different than random. So why does the peacock look the way he does? Just random. Why do all dimorphic birds look and behave as they do? Just random. Why the lion’s mane, the woman’s breasts and on and on? Random again and again. Yet the “just random” Darwinist reply does not work as “easy come, easy go” – “random come, random go” whereas the standards of beauty remain essentially unchanged. As Venus of Willendorf shows, the human standard of beauty has not changed in at least 30,000 years or 1,000 generations, these days aided by breast and buttock implants. A hypothesized trend (“evolution”) that doesn’t budge for that long cannot be a real trend.
  6. Whatever happens to organisms is outside their control, hence sexual selection cannot shape organisms as Darwin imagined. The peahen is not responsible in the slightest for the peacock’s plumage. Even if it had an objective, the “selecting” sex has no means to get to that objective. The best example of what selection can do and cannot do is breeding. Human breeders indeed have the long term targets and the best technology available. Yet all they can do is fragile deformed variants of the wild that require a lot to survive and propagate and that under no circumstance will “diverge” into new “species”. Contrast that with the “selecting” bird. Why is she having sex? She doesn’t know. What is she looking for? She doesn’t know… whatever her beauty instinct tells her. She doesn’t read, write, or talk. Cannot correlate the beauty seen to underlying health of her peer. Doesn’t know she will have offspring, let alone how to improve their lot… if she even cares. We know all these because we, the humans, are also automatons with regard to our descendants. We know very little and can influence almost nothing. Countless number of parents hope for more from their children, yet are badly disappointed. Where are the descendants of famous rulers, scientists, artists, and athletes? Nowhere in particular. They all regressed to the mean. And it is even worse for some of those afflicted by “reason” as they decide to “save the planet” by not even having any offspring at all.
  7. Incorrect assumptions drive the confused “evolution through sexual selection” narrative: that the selection has a direction – without a direction, there is no output different than random; that the selected passes most of his characteristics to the progeny – this disregards regression to the mean as well as the contribution of the other parent, meaning the selector; that the phenotype is entirely encoded in the genotype – if this were the case, we would be able to control 100% of the phenotype by changing the genome, but it’s clear that’s not possible even theoretically; that successive mutations can accomplish anything as long as sexual selection guides the output – this is clearly false as breeding shows when comparing the robustness of crossbreeds with the feebleness of purebreds. Of course Darwin was clueless about genetics. But even with our current best knowledge of genetics – knowledge that the selecting sex completely lacks – it is not clear what sexual selection accomplishes, given that the Y chromosome is just a very small percentage of the genome. After all, offspring inherit both lineages regardless of sex. So if the male progeny is attractive like the male parent (a positive), that may be offset by both the male and female offspring becoming more attractive to the predator too (two negatives). For instance, in some peafowl, even the peahen has some conspicuous blue streaks that cannot help her camouflage.
  8. In conclusion, “evolution” by sexual selection is one confused mess because:
    1. The distinction between sexual selection and “natural selection” (if such thing existed) is contrived
    2. Incompatible mating behaviors are incorrectly grouped under the same banner
    3. Attraction to Universal Beauty is what is incorrectly interpreted as sexual selection
    4. The standard of beauty is essentially unchanged contrary to the Darwinist narrative
    5. Whatever happens to organisms is outside their control, hence sexual selection cannot shape organisms as Darwin imagined
    6. Darwin’s sexual selection hypothesis is based on a number of incorrect and ignorant assumptions

 Links:

https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/224257/the-evolution-of-beauty-by-richard-o-prum/

https://www.britannica.com/science/sexual-selection

https://www.treehugger.com/ugliest-animals-on-the-planet-4869328

https://www.amazon.com/peacock-costumes-women/s?k=peacock+costumes+for+women

https://www.amiclubwear.com/costume-animal.html

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Y_chromosome

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Venus_of_Willendorf#/media/File:Venus_of_Willendorf_-_All_sides.jpg 

242 thoughts on “Sexual Selection Is Not Helpful to “Evolution”?

  1. CharlieM: A case of humans muttering to ourselves while animals do not think about it, they just get on with the job of living.

    That’s right! Humans are the only animals that indulge in displacement activity, or make inflatable sex toys!
    [Dogs will happily ‘rub one out’ on a sufficiently submissive human, so the argument that bestiality is uniquely human fails.] Still no inflatable toys though! Ain’t we special!
    The point being, Charlie, that you just assume that animals don’t “mutter to themselves”, because you don’t understand ‘starling’. They all look the same to you, indeed.

  2. Alan Fox: CharlieM: The mating behaviour of humans around the planet is extremely diverse. On the other hand the mating behaviour of salmon around the planet can be fairly accurately predicted.

    Alan Fox: It’s innate behaviour that is more predictable, sure. Humans have more scope with learned behaviours. Though societal norms and how that may affect individual’s choice of social interaction, clothing, prejudices isn’t immune to broad-brush prediction. There’s even less choice about mother tongue

    Individualization of human behaviour is in the early stages. But I can see a time in the future due to increased globalization of communications and ease of travel that there will be a common worldwide language (possibly Chinese, English, French of a hybrid?) Humanity is moving from tribal orientated life, through extended family orientated life to a more individualistic way of life. We can even see this in the way that people name their children.

    When we see indigenous children living deep in the Amazon rainforest wearing T shirts with “NYU” or the like printed on the front then we know that their old way of life isn’t going to last. It’s safe to bet that the clothes you wear are pretty different from those that your ancestors wore just a couple of hundred years ago.

  3. Allan Miller: Nah. You don’t need to measure the fitnesses.

    You don’t??? Then this concept is redundant. Get rid of it. Oh wait, the whole “theory” goes down in flames if you do that. Oh well 🙂

    Allan Miller: It’s not the same setup. In the measurement phase, you’re checking the independent fitnesses. In the 50/50 setup, you’re putting them together, competitively.

    But you assume the two setups are additive. Which in the end means “the same”. Else you can’t forecast anything. Here’s just a few non-additive scenarios: They fight and population A eliminates B. Or B eliminates A. Or A had a deficiency that interbreeding cures. And so on and so forth.

    And anyway, all you care about is reproductive success. No “fitness” whatsoever. And your best guess is always past experience, or the internet.

    Allan Miller: I don’t know what failing trials has to do with whether they are repeat experiments with slight variation or not.

    Haha. You don’t even bother to read:
    “Phase III trials compare a new drug to the standard-of-care drug. These trials assess the side effects of each drug and which drug works better. Phase III trials enroll 100 or more patients.”
    “Repeat experiments” my ass.

    Allan Miller: You measure one strain and it duplicates every 20 minutes. The second, every 40. So the first has twice the rate of increase per unit time. Now put them together, see what happens. Would the result be any different if you hadn’t measured first?

    But the point of your second experiment is to check your forecast. And your forecast is based on the first experiment plus a boatload of assumptions and tight controls. So no “fitness” is necessary. First result predict second one. Like I said, it’s elementary. Fucking so.

    Allan Miller: Pound that nail, nonlin! Pound it good!

    But am I right? Of course!

    Allan Miller: No, I’m not saying that. Selection is not relevant in an extinction scenario. The reproductive output of all variants falls to zero.

    I’d say “not relevant” is an understatement. But what about cats v dogs on an island? Someone thrives and someone goes extinct (in one scenario). Based on what? And if “not selection”, then makes sense to drop the whole “selection” nonsense.

    Allan Miller: You are literally denying that a type with higher output will outcompete a type with lower, because you don’t know in advance which is which.

    No. I’m just saying there’s no such thing as “fitness” or “selection” or “evolution”. Face it. If there was a “fitness”, you would be able to estimate it BEFORE the experiment, not after. You would be able to calculate “fitness” based solely on the genome (phenotype), and the environment which is exactly what the “theory” claims. It would also be different that the number of descendants, something you can only know post fact and something that just doesn’t need another label.

    Corneel: And remember, you can freely appeal to purifying selection and use it to make predictions, as long as you do not actually use the f-word.

    Hey look. My favorite spoiled brat is back with another gem of… comedy. Reads one thing, “translates” to another.

  4. Nonlin.org: And anyway, all you care about is reproductive success. No “fitness” whatsoever.

    Relative fitness is reproductive success. It is the crux of evolutionary theory (along with heritability and variation). And a way to measure reproductive success is to count progeny. Ghengis Khan left lots of descendants, for example.

  5. CharlieM: It’s safe to bet that the clothes you wear are pretty different from those that your ancestors wore just a couple of hundred years ago.

    It’s even safe to say that I dress differently from how my late father did, even further from my grandparents. But was life so different for people at the bottom of the social order in Victorian times, the medieval period, in the Roman era? Change in the human condition has accelerated markedly in the last couple of centuries.

  6. Nonlin.org: If there was a “fitness”, you would be able to estimate it BEFORE the experiment, not after.

    Oh nonlin, we explained this to you in 2019.

    We can look at alleles and, in some cases, predict that they will make their carriers unhealthy (or more healthy…) and we can observe that the frequencies of the alleles change over generations, in a consistent manner. Your supposed circularity is broken by our knowledge of biology.

  7. Nonlin.org: If there was a “fitness”, you would be able to estimate it BEFORE the experiment, not after.

    Of course you can hypothesize that particular traits may bestow higher relative fitness on individuals in a breeding population in a particular niche. You can then go on to measure it (by counting progeny) to confirm your hypothesis.

  8. DNA_Jock:
    CharlieM: A case of humans muttering to ourselves while animals do not think about it, they just get on with the job of living.

    DNA_Jock: That’s right! Humans are the only animals that indulge in displacement activity, or make inflatable sex toys!
    [Dogs will happily ‘rub one out’ on a sufficiently submissive human, so the argument that bestiality is uniquely human fails.] Still no inflatable toys though! Ain’t we special!
    The point being, Charlie, that you just assume that animals don’t “mutter to themselves”, because you don’t understand ‘starling’. They all look the same to you, indeed.

    You do realise that by “humans muttering” I was using it with reference to humans publishing research papers. When humans publish papers, record lectures or write books this type of communication becomes available to be transmitted over time and space to greatly extended degree. These can still be accessed long after the life of the original author has ended.

    As an example how many papers and further books have referenced Darwin’s original books?

    Are you comparing this to the chattering and mimicking calls of the starling sitting on top of the chimney of my house?

  9. Alan Fox: Relative fitness is reproductive success. It is the crux of evolutionary theory (along with heritability and variation). And a way to measure reproductive success is to count progeny.

    Only you don’t need “evolution” to count progeny. You just don’t get ‘affirming the consequent’, do you?

    DNA_Jock: We can look at alleles and, in some cases, predict that they will make their carriers unhealthy (or more healthy…) and we can observe that the frequencies of the alleles change over generations, in a consistent manner.

    But that’s not what I’m saying, is it? I’m asking for your GENERAL FORMULA to get from phenotype & environment to number of progeny. Whereas all you offer is a [more or less] linear extrapolation of the past… that doesn’t need your “evolution” bogus assumptions. Get it? It’s fucking elementary!

    Alan Fox: Of course you can hypothesize that particular traits may bestow higher relative fitness on individuals in a breeding population in a particular niche.

    Bestow a formula and a proof, not vague bullshit.

  10. Nonlin.org: Only you don’t need “evolution” to count progeny. You just don’t get ‘affirming the consequent’, do you?

    You are welcome to provide other explanations why progeny numbers vary.

  11. Nonlin.org: Bestow a formula and a proof, not vague bullshit.

    There you go with proofs again. Hypotheses are mathematical models that we can compare to reality. What we observe matters. Whether models make accurate predictions dictates whether we keep, modify or discard them.

    Don’t like evolutionary theory, fine. But coming up with another explanation that we could test against observed reality would be a start in convincing others you had something new or interesting to say.

  12. DNA_Jock: Oh nonlin, we explained this to you in 2019.

    We can look at alleles and, in some cases, predict that they will make their carriers unhealthy (or more healthy…) and we can observe that the frequencies of the alleles change over generations, in a consistent manner. Your supposed circularity is broken by our knowledge of biology.

    I always know you are going to say something full of shit, when you say “we explained this to you already back when…” Its a tell Jock. Try not to be so obvious.

    What the hell does “healthy” means in terms of evolution? You mean like “healthy individuals have more babies” theory, so to prove your theory you count how many offspring something has and then call ones with more more healthy?

    Still don’t get it huh? We have explained it to you a thousand times…

  13. Nonlin.org: Hey look. My favorite spoiled brat is back with another gem of… comedy. Reads one thing, “translates” to another.

    How can you predict that those “fragile deformed variants” continue to depend on us for their survival and propagation without assuming that past experiences can be extrapolated to the future? What makes you so sure the future environment isn’t congenial to domesticated species? Did you perhaps entertain the undisclosed assumption that the future environment is the same as the past environment?

    One of the many reasons you keep looking so silly is that you keep using arguments that strongly rely on the very concepts you oppose.

  14. phoodoo: We have explained it to you a thousand times…

    Who is this ‘we’ you refer to? There is only you.

    phoodoo: You mean like “healthy individuals have more babies” theory, so to prove your theory you count how many offspring something has and then call ones with more more healthy?

    What if you _predicted_ which ones would be have more offspring in advance? Would that count?

    I mean, what if you know about the fitness landscape in advance? You could use that knowledge to make predictions!

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41559-021-01397-0

    Here, we develop a fitness model that predicts growth rates of common resistance mutants from their effects on cell metabolism. The model maps metabolic effects of resistance mutations in drug-free environments and under drug challenge; the resulting fitness trade-off defines a Pareto surface of resistance evolution. We predict evolutionary trajectories of growth rates and resistance levels, which characterize Pareto resistance mutations emerging at different drug dosages. We also predict the prevalent resistance mechanism depending on drug and nutrient levels

    Seems like actual scientists doing actual science have no problem with ‘fitness’ being circularly defined as you claim. Useful work is being done and published.

  15. OMagain,

    I love when you google things that you don’t understand at all.

    We predict evolutionary trajectories of growth rates and resistance levels, which characterize Pareto resistance mutations emerging at different drug dosages. We also predict the prevalent resistance mechanism depending on drug and nutrient levels: low-dosage drug defence is mounted by regulation, evolution of distinct metabolic sectors sets in at successive threshold dosages. Evolutionary resistance mechanisms include membrane permeability changes and drug target mutations. These predictions are confirmed by empirical growth inhibition curves and genomic data of Escherichia coli populations. Our results show that resistance evolution, by coupling major metabolic pathways, is strongly intertwined with systems biology and ecology of microbial populations.

    Absolutely NOTHING in this suggest a Darwinian model of random mutations. In fact your first clue should have been this sentence-

    low-dosage drug defence is mounted by regulation, evolution of distinct metabolic sectors sets in at successive threshold dosages.

    Darwinain evolution does not employ a “defence”. There are no mechanisms. Darwinian evolution is the opposite of a defense-its destruction. Some things die-thus they can’t reproduce. No defense involved.

    I sent you a private message-I called you a twit. I didn’t want to tell anyone else but you can post it here if you like. It just says-“You are a twit.”

  16. phoodoo: Absolutely NOTHING in this suggest a Darwinian model of random mutations.

    Yet the writer of the abstract is quite free with “evolution”, “evolutionary” and “mutation”.

    phoodoo: Darwinain evolution does not employ a “defence”.

    Have you not heard of the immune system? Antibodies?

  17. phoodoo: I always know you are going to say something full of shit, when you say “we explained this to you already back when…” Its a tell Jock. Try not to be so obvious.

    I try to be as obvious as I can: I always provide a link back to the original conversation, so that readers can check my assertion against the history. I did enjoy your contribution to that 2019 conversation; here’s a comment where I admitted to being something of an asshole, if that helps motivate you to click through…

    phoodoo: Still don’t get it huh? We have explained it to you a thousand times…

    So you keep saying 😀

  18. In the short piece Dogma and Doubt Ronald Brady says that,

    “when a theory becomes part of the common working knowledge of an entire community it becomes the context within which that community understands the world. Doubt comes to be regarded as something less than legitimate, and critics find themselves talking only to each other.”

    Those who hold to the theory and cannot tolerate doubt or criticism need to come to realize that it has come to be a belief system.

    Brady writes:

    “Re-thinking Darwinian assumptions, the reader will find, seems to lead us a good distance beyond Darwin. We have only to examine the central argument of Darwin’s text to find out how far. Fortunately, Darwin set forth this argument with great clarity and his reasoning is quite transparent. The two-syllogism argument leading to the natural selection of the fittest runs as follows:

    First syllogism

    Premises taken from observation:

    Rapid potential increase of organisms

    Constant population size

    Conclusion:

    A struggle for existence

    Second syllogism

    Premises taken from observation:

    Struggle for existence (conclusion, above)

    Inherited variation (observation)

    Conclusion:

    Survival of the fittest

    …If we grant, for the purposes of argument, Darwin’s first two premises (they can be questioned today, but that is not my interest), we must recognize that the conclusion does not follow without further information. Assuming that many more are born than survive long enough to reproduce, we may deduce only a high attrition rate that takes its toll prior to reproduction. This is a purely mathematical argument, it says nothing about the dynamic within such populations which might accompany such attrition. We may add that ourselves, but then we are admitting another premise. We are adding information to what Darwin said was already complete, as, in fact, Darwin must have done also without noticing it.

    “A struggle for existence,” wrote Darwin (1859), “inevitably follows from the high rate at which all organic beings tend to increase.””

    In the paper Brady argues, ” that the real difficulty behind the recent criticisms is the inconclusive empirical status of the theory, and that the belief with which the theory is embraced by the defenders makes that empirical inconclusiveness all but invisible to them. The critics are tacitly aiming at a brand of science rather than a specific theory, and for this reason their concern may turn out to be of great importance in the near future.

    As we all know, to argue against someone’s belief system is very rarely successful.

  19. Alan Fox:
    CharlieM: It’s safe to bet that the clothes you wear are pretty different from those that your ancestors wore just a couple of hundred years ago.

    Alan Fox: It’s even safe to say that I dress differently from how my late father did, even further from my grandparents. But was life so different for people at the bottom of the social order in Victorian times, the medieval period, in the Roman era? Change in the human condition has accelerated markedly in the last couple of centuries.

    Change brought about by cultural evolution.

    I think you made a good point when you distinguished cultural evolution from biological evolution.

    Cultural evolution has been brought about by human minds.

    Biological evolution has not come about by the minds of individual creatures but this does not preclude minds existing at a higher level than that of individual biological creatures. And in this scenario individual creative human minds are but a novel repetition at a lower stage of that which already exists at the higher level. The whole reflected in the parts.

  20. phoodoo: I love when you google things that you don’t understand at all.

    Whereas you, with your deference to Uri Geller’s ability to bend spoons using his PSI powers and associated condemnations of James Randi, inspire confidence in your intellectual abilities in us all.

    phoodoo: Absolutely NOTHING in this suggest a Darwinian model of random mutations. In fact your first clue should have been this sentence-

    What’s a Darwinian model of random mutations then? Darwin did not know about genes.

    phoodoo: Darwinain evolution does not employ a “defence”. There are no mechanisms. Darwinian evolution is the opposite of a defense-its destruction. Some things die-thus they can’t reproduce. No defense involved.

    An interesting rebuttal to the paper. Will you be publishing it, if so where? Letter to the editor perhaps?

    phoodoo: I sent you a private message-I called you a twit. I didn’t want to tell anyone else but you can post it here if you like. It just says-“You are a twit.”

    This site is not https enabled. That means that the banned in China materials which I have just PM’d you have already been noted as associated with your IP address, as there is no encryption being applied to this connection. So anyone monitoring the traffic can plainly see the contents.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2018/02/china-surveillance/552203/

    And with that level of surveillance network in place, you are already busted. Write us a letter from the camps, twit.

  21. Alan Fox: You are welcome to provide other explanations why progeny numbers vary.

    ‘Other explanations’ are not required to prove your “explanation” illogical.

    Corneel: How can you predict that those “fragile deformed variants” continue to depend on us for their survival and propagation without assuming that past experiences can be extrapolated to the future? What makes you so sure the future environment isn’t congenial to domesticated species? Did you perhaps entertain the undisclosed assumption that the future environment is the same as the past environment?

    You’re not making any sense. Again.
    1. The comment was about the past. It’s not a forecast.
    2. Yes, we are making their environment congenial, like I said and you agree.
    3. Yes, the past *predicts the future without the need for a bogus “fitness-selection-evolution” explanation. That’s EXACTLY my point.
    * More or less depending on changes.

    Alan Fox: phoodoo: Darwinain evolution does not employ a “defence”.

    Have you not heard of the immune system? Antibodies?

    The illogical assumption being that the immune system is somehow linked to “evolution”. Haha.

  22. Nonlin.org: ‘Other explanations’ are not required to prove your “explanation” illogical.

    Yes indeed. Proof is not part of the scientific method. Science involves observation and measurement. If you dispute some observation or measurement, you can check it out for yourself as anyone can. If you don’t, you are welcome to explain those observations and measurements with your own hypothesis.

  23. Nonlin.org: The illogical assumption being that the immune system is somehow linked to “evolution”. Haha.

    There’s a nested hierarchy of immune systems across species. It’s not an assumption, it’s an observed fact.

  24. Nonlin.org: You’re not making any sense. Again.
    1. The comment was about the past. It’s not a forecast.

    Yes, you made a forecast. Read again.

    2. Yes, we are making their environment congenial, like I said and you agree.

    No, we have been making it so in the past. You cannot say anything about the future without assuming that future environments resemble past environments. This is the assumption you have been challenging, remember?

    3. Yes, the past *predicts the future without the need for a bogus “fitness-selection-evolution” explanation. That’s EXACTLY my point.
    * More or less depending on changes.

    You’ve got yourself seriously confused there. The “fitness-selection-evolution explanation” relies on the fact that continuation of past events is a decent prediction for the future*, just like YOUR prediction wrt “fragile deformed variants of the wild”, which is a statement about fitness as well, though you didn’t realize it. When you called that cheating, you also challenged the basis for your own claims, as well as a quite basic assumption of the entire scientific enterprise.

    This is a recurrent theme in your screeds; you are so preoccupied with attacking evolution that you end up attacking other scientific disciplines as well and often even undermine your own claims. Like in chess, it pays to not only focus on your opponent, but to pay attention to your own pieces as well.

    * More or less depending on changes.

  25. Corneel,

    One of the many reasons you keep looking so silly is that you keep using arguments that strongly rely on the very concepts you oppose.

    Yep. See also detection of HGT and ‘the cost of introns’.

  26. I’ve mentioned this before, but precisely the same issues affect pathogen R values as affect fitness. Both are a metric which is strictly a proxy for some other cause(s), and can be seen as both backward-looking and causal into the future, because they impact progression. If R < 1, a pathogen will dwindle, if greater, it will spread. If two strains have different R values, that with the greater would be expected to spread more, uncontroversially. Both could be expressed tautologically, if one felt expressing things that are self-evidently true to be problematic. But you never see the same dogged opposition to R values.

  27. Alan Fox: Proof is not part of the scientific method.

    Yes, you’re clueless. It’s known. No need to repeat so often. And “evolution” is not science.

    Alan Fox: There’s a nested hierarchy of immune systems across species. It’s not an assumption, it’s an observed fact.

    More nonsense from the clueless.

    Corneel: You cannot say anything about the future without assuming that future environments resemble past environments.

    I’m not.

    Corneel: Yes, you made a forecast.

    Nope.

    Corneel: The “fitness-selection-evolution explanation” relies on the fact that continuation of past events is a decent prediction for the future*, just like YOUR prediction wrt “fragile deformed variants of the wild”, which is a statement about fitness as well, though you didn’t realize it.

    Mine is not a forecast, as much as you wished so. Yours is just flying bullshit not anchored in anything real. BTW, “continuation of past events” is STASIS given we see NO current “evo trends”. Which is utterly incompatible with “evolution” that claims “changes”.

    Corneel: When you called that cheating, you also challenged the basis for your own claims, as well as a quite basic assumption of the entire scientific enterprise.

    False. I already explained that
    1. Number of descendants needs no other bogus label (aka “fitness”).
    2. If there were such thing, you’d be supposed to calculate “fitness” strictly based on the genome and environment. Can you? Of course not because “fitness” is bogus.
    3. Number of progeny just doesn’t fit “fitness” as the dick-brained one showed with his “fitness” of 3… today but not yesterday and not tomorrow.
    4. A forecast needs no bogus “fitness-selection-evolution” explanation. Just an extrapolation of the past.

    So far you’ve managed to ignore all these inconvenient facts.

    Allan Miller: I’ve mentioned this before, but precisely the same issues affect pathogen R values as affect fitness.

    Yes, “let’s tie the Titanic to that other wooden boat; that’ll save it”. Haha.

  28. Nonlin.org: Which is utterly incompatible with “evolution” that claims “changes”.

    https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanres/article/PIIS2213-2600(21)00075-8/fulltext

    And yet something in the news lately has been demonstrably evolving.

    Unless, of course you believe it’s your designer intervening to make COVID spread faster?

    Why are there now many different variants of COVID from the ID POV, when it started with just a single strain? Where have they come from? Where they designed? If so, what by? Your designer?

  29. Nonlin.org:

    Yes, “let’s tie the Titanic to that other wooden boat; that’ll save it”. Haha.

    ‘Cept fitness came first.

  30. OMagain,

    Ahem … they are still viruses. Also these are genetic changes, which everyone knows have nothing to do with “evolution”

    /nonlin.

  31. OMagain: And yet something in the news lately has been demonstrably evolving.

    How is that “evolution”?

    Are viruses even alive? And if not, is the Moon, etc. also “evolving”? What is the Moon’s “fitness”? Oh wait, you don’t even know your own, let alone the Moon’s.

    Allan Miller: ‘Cept fitness came first.

    “Came” but never arrived. Where is it?

    Allan Miller: Ahem … they are still viruses.

    But they will “evolve” into little monkeys “given enough time”?

  32. Nonlin in the OP:

    Human breeders indeed have the long term targets and the best technology available. Yet all they can do is fragile deformed variants of the wild that require a lot to survive and propagate and that under no circumstance will “diverge” into new “species”.

    Nonlin now: 1. The comment was about the past. It’s not a forecast.

    Nonlin then:

    The cichlids of Lake Victoria had less than 15,000 years to adapt and are as diverse if not more so than the cichlids in the other, much older African Great Lakes. But they do not need even that much time as the newer aquarium varieties obtained in a few generations show. Most likely, cichlids variants have come and gone throughout the history of all African Great Lakes in short cycles of adaptation.

    Nonlin now: “continuation of past events” is STASIS given we see NO current “evo trends”

    Nonlin then.

    I don’t know your many undisclosed assumptions. Probably that the future environment is same as the past environment which was the same for both populations. This means you’re peeking at the future by observing the past. That is your “time machine” and is cheating.

    Nonlin now: 4. A forecast needs no bogus “fitness-selection-evolution” explanation. Just an extrapolation of the past.

    All emphasis mine.

  33. Nonlin.org,

    Allan Miller: ‘Cept fitness came first.

    Nonlin: “Came” but never arrived. Where is it?

    You’ve taken a massive detour round the point, so you clearly know it’s there. How does the R number evade your criticisms of fitness?

    Allan Miller: Ahem … they are still viruses.

    Nonlin: But they will “evolve” into little monkeys “given enough time

    Irrelevant. Are they “evolving” or not?

  34. Nonlin.org: How is that “evolution”?

    Are viruses even alive?

    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41586-020-2895-3

    There are demonstrable changes in the wild type that are causing more infection then previous varients. Where did those changes come from under your ‘model’?

    Or will you just deny that those changes exist or that it’s not evolution because there is some debate over if viri are actually alive? Oh, you’ve just done exactly that 🙂

    It’s ok. We know you can’t answer the simplest of questions anyway, like what your designer actually does do!

    If you deny evolution happens at all I guess that’s one way of not needing to explain it.

    But there are multiple variants of covid some of which are better at infecting people then others. Why?

  35. Corneel: All emphasis mine.

    So, what bugs you again?

    Allan Miller: You’ve taken a massive detour round the point, so you clearly know it’s there.

    You have a point?

    Allan Miller: Nonlin: But they will “evolve” into little monkeys “given enough time

    Irrelevant. Are they “evolving” or not?

    Nothing is. So, no.

    OMagain: But there are multiple variants of covid some of which are better at infecting people then others. Why?

    There are also multiple variants of people. Some better than others at… your pick. So?

    “Why?” is a good question. Built-in (designed) adaptability is a good answer.

    Corneel: Nonlin.org: Are viruses even alive?

    Prominent Intelligent Design theorists say yes.

    Last I checked, it’s still an open question, “prominent” this or that notwithstanding.

  36. And before that detour, we were talking about sexual selection and how it fails to account for “evolution”. If I didn’t miss anything, the counter arguments were limited to:
    1. A fake controversy
    2. “Venus of Willendorf is not who she pretends to be”/ “I don’t like her”
    3. An abysmal counter definition that its proponent couldn’t defend

    Did I miss something there? Here are the conclusions again if you want to add anything:

    In conclusion, “evolution” by sexual selection is one confused mess because:
    A. The distinction between sexual selection and “natural selection” (if such thing existed) is contrived
    B. Incompatible mating behaviors are incorrectly grouped under the same banner
    C. Attraction to Universal Beauty is what is incorrectly interpreted as sexual selection
    D. The standard of beauty is essentially unchanged contrary to the Darwinist narrative
    E. Whatever happens to organisms is outside their control, hence sexual selection cannot shape organisms as Darwin imagined
    F. Darwin’s sexual selection hypothesis is based on a number of incorrect and ignorant assumptions

  37. Nonlin.org: So, what bugs you again?

    You mean you can’t even spot what is going on with the parts I quoted without me telling you?

    Wow, just …. wow!

    Nonlin.org: Last I checked, it’s still an open question

    Don’t viruses look absolutely Designed to you? And they definitely parasitize living things, no?

  38. Nonlin.org: Did I miss something there?

    Yes, you appear to have missed the part where you discuss sexual selection.

    Nonlin.org: With four very important points left unanswered:

    That won’t do! Here is your answer: They are all wrong.

    Nonlin.org:Here are the conclusions again if you want to add anything:

    Sure, I’d like to add that those are all wrong as well.

  39. Nonlin.org: “Why?” is a good question. Built-in (designed) adaptability is a good answer.

    No, it’s not. It simply raises more questions.

    What is that ‘adaptability’ mechanism?
    Where is it located?
    If you don’t know where or what it is, how do you know it actually exists at all?
    You could say that about anything at all, that it was designed to be that way. What questions can be answered by your model with answers that are not ‘it was designed that way’?

    How can we test the idea that built in designed adaptability exists? Can you think of an experiment that could be performed to confirm that it exists?

    I would suggest it might take a while, such an experiment, and since you were planning for the long term you’d need something that had a fast generation rate.

    Is that the sort of thing you might have had in mind if you were to design an experiment to test that ‘good’ answer?

    How is that built in (designed) adaptability passed around among a set of organisms, out of interest? Does it start with a single individual doing some (designed) built in adaptation, and that, er, makes it able to produce more copies of itself then um, versions that were not yet doing (designed) adaptability, So that it some exists more than other, er er, lesser good versions of itself?

    Tell me nonlin, how do built in (designed) adaptability changes proppage? Or don’t they, do they happen simultaneously in a proportion of the existing organisms in a single generation? Or, what?

    I look forward to your confident dismissals. But you’ve opened the door a little but now. It’ll never close.

    built in designed adaptability indeed.

  40. Nonlin.org,

    You have a point?

    Indeed. I’ll try a third time to state it, so you can play dumb again. How does the R value of epidemiology evade your criticisms of fitness?

    Allan Miller: Irrelevant. Are they “evolving” or not?

    Nonlin: Nothing is. So, no

    Ah OK. They aren’t evolving, but are instead changing genetically in a manner which, for some variants, helps them spread. But calling that ‘evolution’ would be problematic, for some reason. 🤔

  41. Corneel: Don’t viruses look absolutely Designed to you? And they definitely parasitize living things, no?

    It’s exquisite. You can’t tell me binding to ACE2 receptors by the spike protein ‘just happened’. Search space is just tooooooo big. And there’s an analogy with computer viruses too, always a clincher. One would hate to affirm the consequent.

  42. I missed this. Might have been better staying missed, but …

    Nonlin.org,

    Allan Miller: Nah. You don’t need to measure the fitnesses.

    Nonlin: You don’t??? Then this concept is redundant. Get rid of it. Oh wait, the whole “theory” goes down in flames if you do that. Oh well 

    You are saying here that nothing can have a causal effect unless you measure it. Which is dumb.

    Allan Miller: It’s not the same setup. In the measurement phase, you’re checking the independent fitnesses. In the 50/50 setup, you’re putting them together, competitively.

    Nonlin? But you assume the two setups are additive.

    I do? You seem not to know what ‘additive’ means.

    And anyway, all you care about is reproductive success. No “fitness” whatsoever.

    One of the dumber statements it has been my misfortune to read, and I’ve been around a bit. You don’t survive, you don’t reproduce. Traits that aren’t inherited don’t spread.

    Allan Miller: You measure one strain and it duplicates every 20 minutes. The second, every 40. So the first has twice the rate of increase per unit time. Now put them together, see what happens. Would the result be any different if you hadn’t measured first?

    Nonlin: But the point of your second experiment is to check your forecast.

    Is it buggery. The first phase is neither an experiment nor a forecast, but a measurement.

    Allan Miller: No, I’m not saying that. Selection is not relevant in an extinction scenario. The reproductive output of all variants falls to zero.

    Nonlin: I’d say “not relevant” is an understatement. But what about cats v dogs on an island? Someone thrives and someone goes extinct (in one scenario). Based on what? And if “not selection”, then makes sense to drop the whole “selection” nonsense.

    It is possible to extend the concept of selection beyond a within-population competition between recombining variants. This is the case for any asexual, for example. But I was talking of within-population selection, so cats vs dogs isn’t relevant.

    Allan Miller: You are literally denying that a type with higher output will outcompete a type with lower, because you don’t know in advance which is which.

    Nonlin: No. I’m just saying there’s no such thing as “fitness” or “selection” or “evolution”.

    So you object to some words.

    Face it. If there was a “fitness”, you would be able to estimate it BEFORE the experiment, not after. 

    That’s why you do the measurement phase. Do try to keep up.

    You would be able to calculate “fitness” based solely on the genome (phenotype),

    Clunk! Genome and phenotype are very different things.

    and the environment which is exactly what the “theory” claims.

    Does it heck.

  43. Corneel,

    Do you have a point?
    Corneel,

    Well, do you?

    OMagain: No, it’s not. It simply raises more questions.

    Answers always raise more questions.

    OMagain: How can we test the idea that built in designed adaptability exists? Can you think of an experiment that could be performed to confirm that it exists?

    Two parts:
    1. Designed: Go see my design inference essays – it’s all testable
    2. Adaptable: Go check every single organism and you will find it’s adaptable without exception – this too is testable

    OMagain: What is that ‘adaptability’ mechanism?
    Where is it located?

    Tell me nonlin, how do built in (designed) adaptability changes proppage?

    This is silly. Look it up. Most of the other questions are even sillier.

    Allan Miller: Indeed. I’ll try a third time to state it, so you can play dumb again. How does the R value of epidemiology evade your criticisms of fitness?

    It’s not part of the pseudo-theory.

    Allan Miller: They aren’t evolving, but are instead changing genetically in a manner which, for some variants, helps them spread.

    Are “they” changing, or being changed within the host?
    Inappropriate concept: how do you “help” something that may or may not be alive? How would you know its will? See:
    help
    /hɛlp/
    Learn to pronounce
    verb
    1.
    make it easier or possible for (someone) to do something by offering one’s services or resources.

    Allan Miller: But calling that ‘evolution’ would be problematic, for some reason.

    No. It would be an unsupported concept stretch. Go on, support your claim.

    Allan Miller: You are saying here that nothing can have a causal effect unless you measure it.

    No. I’m saying what I said. What’s up with Darwinists and their “translations”? WTF?!?

    Allan Miller: I do? You seem not to know what ‘additive’ means.

    Right back at you.

    Allan Miller: Nonlin: And anyway, all you care about is reproductive success. No “fitness” whatsoever.


    You don’t survive, you don’t reproduce. Traits that aren’t inherited don’t spread.

    Your statement doesn’t follow. Now, that is stupid.

    Allan Miller: The first phase is neither an experiment nor a forecast, but a measurement.

    And to measure you don’t need some sort of setup? Is that not an experiment? You have problems with basic concepts, logic and math again.

    Allan Miller: This is the case for any asexual, for example. But I was talking of within-population selection, so cats vs dogs isn’t relevant.

    Who gives a fuck about your special disclaimer? Your “theory” doesn’t for sure.

    Allan Miller: So you object to some words.

    If you agree they’re meaningless, then sure.

    Allan Miller: Face it. If there was a “fitness”, you would be able to estimate it BEFORE the experiment, not after. 

    That’s why you do the measurement phase.

    Could there be something more stupid than your reply? Sadly, yes.

    Allan Miller: You would be able to calculate “fitness” based solely on the genome (phenotype),

    Clunk! Genome and phenotype are very different things.

    Yes. Your choice. You fail either way.

  44. Oh dear.

    More content-free frothing from nonlin.

    @Nonlin:

    My days of not taking you seriously are coming to a middle.

    /pinches KN’s line.

  45. Nonlin.org,

    Allan Miller: Indeed. I’ll try a third time to state it, so you can play dumb again. How does the R value of epidemiology evade your criticisms of fitness?

    Nonlin: It’s not part of the pseudo-theory.

    Doesn’t matter. It suffers from exactly the same perceived issues as fitness in regards being both a backward-looking metric and causal in terms of spread. But one never sees the spoon-avoidance from Creationists over it that we do over fitness.

    Allan Miller: They aren’t evolving, but are instead changing genetically in a manner which, for some variants, helps them spread.

    Nonlin: Are “they” changing, or being changed within the host?

    However it pleases you to frame it. It boils down to polymerase errors: their sequences change.

    Inappropriate concept: how do you “help” something that may or may not be alive? How would you know its will? See:
    help
    /hɛlp/
    Learn to pronounce
    verb
    1.
    make it easier or possible for (someone) to do something by offering one’s services or resources.

    Oh no! Semantics! I am truly undone!

    Wings help birds fly. Good of them to offer their services.

    Allan Miller: But calling that ‘evolution’ would be problematic, for some reason.

    Nonlin: No. It would be an unsupported concept stretch. Go on, support your claim.

    “Evolution is change in the heritable characteristics of biological populations over successive generations” – Wikipedia. These changes are heritable. Over successive generations. The collection of viral particles is a biological population. Soooo…

    Allan Miller: You are saying here that nothing can have a causal effect unless you measure it.

    Nonlin: No. I’m saying what I said. What’s up with Darwinists and their “translations”? WTF?!?

    Oh dear. Feeling misrepresented? What a shame. You may be unaware that’s what you’re doing, but it is. Remember that my original notion was two types with ‘real’ mean fitnesses of 7 and 0.1. No-one measured this; it’s just what they are, for argument’s sake. But then, you started riffing on the measurement aspect. It doesn’t matter. If the fitnesses are no longer 7 and 0.1 between phase 1 and phase 2, then, to state the obvious, they are something else. Nonetheless, if they remain different, the type with the higher value will tend to displace that with the lower.

    They have to be either different or the same. There is no 3rd option.

    Allan Miller: I do? You seem not to know what ‘additive’ means.

    Nonlin: Right back at you.

    So what’s additive about measuring something then running an experiment? You make-a no sense.

    Me: You don’t survive, you don’t reproduce. Traits that aren’t inherited don’t spread.

    Nonlin: Your statement doesn’t follow. Now, that is stupid.

    Complaining that focus on reproduction misses ‘fitness’, when fitness is being defined in terms of reproductive success, is the dumb thing here.

    Reproduction is a checkpoint, integrating all the various possible factors that affect survival. You can survive your ass off; if you don’t reproduce, your traits do not pass into the future population. So by measuring fitness, you are simply integrating all the complexities into a simple metric, with a direct effect on the proportions of traits in the future population.

    You even acknowledge this, unconsciously, whenever you expect, for example, domestic breeds to fail in the wild. They can only ‘fail’ if they produce fewer offspring.

    Allan Miller: The first phase is neither an experiment nor a forecast, but a measurement.

    Nonlin: And to measure you don’t need some sort of setup? Is that not an experiment? You have problems with basic concepts, logic and math again.

    It’s still not ‘experimental’. Or, every time I get my tape measure out, I’m doing an “experiment”.

    Allan Miller: This is the case for any asexual, for example. But I was talking of within-population selection, so cats vs dogs isn’t relevant.

    Nonlin: Who gives a fuck about your special disclaimer? Your “theory” doesn’t for sure.

    You really don’t have to give a fuck about anything I say. But, to adopt your stance of wilful obtuseness, the “theory” is not the kind of thing that can exhibit an opinion.

    Face it. If there was a “fitness”, you would be able to estimate it BEFORE the experiment, not after. 

    That really does not follow. Let us do away with all measurements, and just estimate.

  46. Nonlin.org: This is silly. Look it up.

    Look it up where? It’s your idea, how can I possibly look it up?

    Nonlin.org: 1. Designed: Go see my design inference essays – it’s all testable
    2. Adaptable: Go check every single organism and you will find it’s adaptable without exception – this too is testable

    1: So why have you not tested it?
    2: So why have you not tested it?

    And what do you mean ‘adaptable’? Does that mean if I get a dog and put it in the arctic it’ll grow thick white fur? And then pass that fur onto it’s progeny?

    Please define adaptable – what actually adapts and how is that adaptation passed on to others, if indeed it is.

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