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15 April 2014


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no one wrote:

'Ah, so you are given to faith after all.'

Do you practice mischaracterizing the words of others or does it come naturally? If the theory needs to be reworked it will. If it doesn't it won't.

'All I did is point to big holes in your pet theory - as did a few others.'

It's not MY theory.

'Why not present a range of beliefs and discuss their relative merits and shortcomings.'

That's what homes and churches are for. Keep it out of science class.

William R. Cumming

ALL: It would be more accurate in this thread if all understood the term "science" and "science theory" to mean the "scientific method"!

William R. Cumming


wiki extract!
consider splitting content into sub-articles or condensing it. (June 2013)

An 18th-century depiction of early experimentation in the field of chemistry
The scientific method is a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge.[1] To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry must be based on empirical and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of reasoning.[2] The Oxford English Dictionary defines the scientific method as: "a method or procedure that has characterized natural science since the 17th century, consisting in systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses."[3]

The chief characteristic which distinguishes the scientific method from other methods of acquiring knowledge is that scientists seek to let reality speak for itself,[discuss] supporting a theory when a theory's predictions are confirmed and challenging a theory when its predictions prove false. Although procedures vary from one field of inquiry to another, identifiable features distinguish scientific inquiry from other methods of obtaining knowledge. Scientific researchers propose hypotheses as explanations of phenomena and design experimental studies to test these hypotheses via predictions which can be derived from them. These steps must be repeatable to guard against mistake or confusion in any particular experimenter. Theories that encompass wider domains of inquiry may bind many independently derived hypotheses together in a coherent, supportive structure. Theories, in turn, may help form new hypotheses or place groups of hypotheses into context.

Scientific inquiry is generally intended to be as objective as possible in order to reduce biased interpretations of results. Another basic expectation is to document, archive, and share all data and methodology so they are available for careful scrutiny by other scientists, giving them the opportunity to verify the results by attempting to reproduce them. This practice, called full disclosure, also allows statistical measures of the reliability of the data to be established (when data is sampled or compared to chance).


Versus your cult views that you can't fully explain being put into schools.


This is exactly what I'm talking about. This smug attitude that you don't have to answer the questions asked about evolution and instead you get to wail on this strawman that has been built up in your head ffs.

Projection much?


Yeah that's exactly what happened, and not the FedGov constantly taking him to court, losing in court, and then changing the rules so they could sue him again.

Let's not even get started on the Reids and their role in "acquiring" federal land in order to lease it to solar power companies.

I wouldn't expect you to understand how this government ignoring rule of law factors into this, but that's just the GCP experience.


Uh actually, yes my disbelief allows exactly that. Defining speciation isn't a "rigorous technical proof".

The fact you wrote a towering block of words to attack a strawman just goes to show you don't regard evolution as "science" and more like a cult where disbelievers 'just don't get it'.


Well accepting things are fuzzy the high priests of the Evolution Cult should be able to answer basic questions instead of responding like offended matrons when someone questions their "theory".


Well, Tyler, pardon me while I point out the obvious, namely that you have no idea what I think, or how I regard evolution. So you're not fooling anybody by pretending that you do.

If you have something substantiative to disagree with about what I wrote, feel free to contend on technical grounds: I'm quite familiar with the principles of evolution, so I'm pretty sure I can handle an honest debate just fine.

But you're on pretty thin intellectual ice if all you can bring to the conversation here is to tell total strangers what you believe they think.



Cieran's clear and intelligent explanation of scientific theory is not a "strawman", for it answers your question directly by explaining why the holes in scientific theories do not nullify the theory; and cannot be considered "a towering block of words", for it is coherent and rational, unlike your emotional response.

Can you prove evolution false using the scientific method, or do you believe evolutionary theory is not a science but a cult? That is the creationists argument and Anne Coulter's too. Here is a short and precise refutation to Anne Coulter's argument that the concept "survival of the fittest" is a tautology. Her argument is based on a falsified definition of the term.


I don't know what you believe, Tyler. But I can understand why some Protestant evangelicals feel separation anxiety from their god when secular schools teach godless science. Like poorly raised dogs, they tear apart the house in frustration. After all, humans are animals too.

I realize this is bad timing on my part.


If the deadbeat didn't want to pay his bills maybe he should petition the government to allow him to give the land back to the Shoshone whom his family ripped off and stole the land from long ago.


They have NO right to teach religion in public schools.


Science is a cult?

LOL - Put down all that scientific equipment you use on a daily basis. Start with your computer.


Dude, you think I haven't seen this arrogant tut tutting/strawman kabuki before whenever someone asks the obvious questions about evolution? Your response is not at all unique, including your construction of a giant strawman with 20000 more words than necessary to dance around the questions already posed.

So here they are again: define speciation and how it occurs in nature. Specifically what's the average rate of speciation and how many mutations are required to per speciation? That's four questions.

Babak asked some good questions about things like origin of life and species stability. How do those fit in with evolution?

How do you go from molecules floating around to DNA to dinosaurs? These are serious questions and that's why I think its a matter of massive hubris to hand wave these questions and proof that science is more and more about cult of personality (Darwin, Einstein) and less about actually discovering things.


True, Gould made his share of mistakes, although his theory about the decline of the .400 hitter has held up pretty well.

no one

WRC, What you quoted is an ideal of what science is as method of inquiry. That ideal often falls short because the method is practiced by humans whose need to eliminate uncertainty and cognitive dissonance in their lives trumps the need to arrive at truth; whatever it is and whatever its ramifications may be.

What we seen in this thread of discussion is people who are not practicing the science they claim to adhere to. It's more important to them to have everything wrapped up nice and tidy in a little box that can be put away on a shelf so they can stop thinking or worrying about it and onto to something else.

"......giving them the opportunity to verify the results by attempting to reproduce them"

Speciation has never been produced, let alone reproduced, by scientists. Darwin noted adaption - meaning emphasis of certain genes already existing within a species' gene pool - not speciation. Adaptation certainly is real and we can see it in the lab and reproduce it.

Scientists have tried and failed to zap the equivalent of the primordial ooze with electricity and produce life; or at least the building blocks of it.

These are facts and they would be worrisome for scientists operating from the ideal you quote.

I have an area of interest wherein I repeatedly run into scientific materialists' absolute refusal to be rational and to deal with reality because that reality runs counter to what they have faith in. That area of interest is in the so called "near death experience" (NDE) and the scientific materialist counter faith is that we are nothing more than biological robots - a brain with electro-chemical impulses creating all thought, emotion and memory that becomes extinct for ever upon cessation of said impulses.

I became interested after having a fairly classic NDE myself wherein my awareness separated from my physical body and looked down at it and the happenings around it and then moved on to experience some wondrous things. My perceptions were very clear, awareness heightened, and not at all foggy or hallucinatory. I later was able to *accurately* report what was happening around my physical body even though it would have been impossible to have seen those things from the physical vantage point of my body; which was unconscious at the time anyhow.

I didn't know much if anything about the phenomenon at the time, but once I began researching I came to know that many people have had similar experiences. Many with veridical perceptions of things that could not be seen from the physical body. The physical body often being flatlined - meaning no brain activity according to monitors - at the time of the event. These events and veridical perceptions have frequently been witnessed and attested to by physicians. The body of evidence strongly suggesting that NDEs are real events and real proof that mind does not equal brain has grown to be quite impressive and continues to grow.

Yet, the scientific materialist crowd comes up with all sorts of highly improbable poorly fitting materialist explanations because NDEs pose a challenge to their model of humans as biological robots. They flippantly dismiss the evidence as if it doesn't exist. They go so far as to lie about reported/verified cases and to attack the character of both the experiencer and any professionals lending support to the claim (e.g. physicians involved in the resuscitation). The better the case in terms of evidence for the reality of the NDE, the more vicious and underhanded the attacks. They try to damage professional reputations of scientists who do honest research in this area and who come away with a positive opinion of the phenomenon.

I'd seen science manipulated for profit, but the reaction to the NDE really opened my eyes to science as religion.


Uh I never said his focus on the scientific method was a straw man. It was his belief that I was somehow defending creationism that was the straw man I was pointing out. So your argument is starting to get Inception level straw man here.

The irony is that evolution cultists will mock creationists for taking things on faith when they do the exact same thing! Just replace a creator with "science" or "scientists" and you've got the exact same chain of thought. Is linking Coulter supposed to be some sort of new variation of argumentum ad Hitlerum fallacy or something?

Finally, you're really asking me to prove a negative? I've yet to see an honest attempt to answer any of the questions about evolution, just a lot of smug, twee responses, strawmanning, and "lol creationist" level of ridiculousness.


20 million illegal aliens, an AG ignoring the laws, a President who doesn't follow the laws and creates them by fiat: okay with GCP.

Dude refuses to sell out due to arbitrary regulation: WHOA WHOA WHOA NATION OF LAWS.

Gcp would have been declaring the Stamp Act was a law and who were these Sons of Liberty to be rebelling against their King.


Conflating a half ass theory with science, your first mistake.

William R. Cumming

Some future asteroid strike on planet earth will end this thread! Thanks for the memories.

the Twisted Genius


I’ll take a shot at giving you some answers to your burning questions on evolution theory.

Define speciation. Let’s start with defining a species as a group of individuals or organisms that actually or can potentially interbreed in nature. In essence, a species is the biggest gene pool possible. Not perfect since bacteria and viruses reproduce without interbreeding… a definite complication in this whole explanatory endeavor. Speciation is the emergence of two or more species from a single ancestral species or can it also be the emergence of a new species from a catastrophic loss of an ancestor species? Or is that just evolution?

How does it occur in nature? Through the process of biological evolution involving genetic mutation and natural selection. A lot of mechanics are involved in the process, but many of them are the same as breeding new domesticated animals and crops. The difference lies in the interbreeding in nature as opposed to forced interbreeding. Genetic mutation in nature is a crap shoot… or a matter of probability. Mutations occur in individuals all the time. Some do nothing. Some are individually catastrophic or fortuitous. A virus can cause genetic mutation in a population that leaves a breeding population with a different genetic make up. This mechanism, only recently discovered, may be a loaded dice in the crap shoot of genetic mutation.

What is the rate of speciation? Well that certainly varies. It’s certainly not a constant rate. Look at flu viruses and bacterial infections. New species appear in a year or less. Fruit flies have been fully speciated (no successful interbreeding) in the lab after 25 generations (fruit fly generations, that is.) The Galapagos Finches speciated over millions of years. The humans and great apes speciated from their common ancestor some 4 to 8 million years ago and we share over 98% of our DNA with the chimpanzee.

How many mutations are required? I don’t know. I doubt the number is consistent across species. I’m sure the genetic history of that fruit fly speciation demonstration would give an answer for fruit flies at least. I’d be interested in seeing that. Given the 98% similarity in human - chimpanzee DNA, it probably doesn’t take that many mutations. It just has to be the right mutations or combination of mutations.

I’m under no illusion that these answers will fully satisfy you. They even raise questions that I will probably research. I think it would take the equivalent of a full semester of study to understand the present state of evolution theory. It’s also a moving target. There are 1.5 million animal and plant species classified to date with 10,000 new species being discovered every year. There are an estimated 8.7 million species in the world. That’s based on a predictive model that I don’t understand. My ignorance of that mathematical field does not invalidate the estimate.

the Twisted Genius

no one,

Tonight's episode of Cosmos covered an excellent example of the misuse of science by the petroleum and chemical industries to further their profiting from lead additives. Fortunately, it was an extremely persistent scientist's work that helped prove the dangers of these additives to humans and the environment. Yes, scientists with other than pure motives do exist just like in every other field.

I applaud your interest in NDE. I think it's a valid field of research, including neuro-chemical and neuro-electrical research. There are a lot of things in this universe that we just don't understand or are willing to understand... or both. I have an interest in remote viewing which I investigated by learning how to do it to the point that I am convinced that it is real. This dovetailed nicely with my anthropological interest in shamanism.


no one

I was raised on the modernist side of American Protestantism that believed in modern science and separation of church and state. Both are Christian but there has been a war between the modernist and Protestant evangelicals, who believe in creationism and the centrality of religion in government and education, since the early twentieth century. Some of our congregation were scientists, engineers and science teachers. They were able to separate religion from science and many still can.

I think you're over reaching to condemn all scientists because you've had a bad experience with a few of them. Science is the study of natural phenomena and a scientific theory can only be inductively reasoned from hard evidence or mathematical formulation.

Copernicus blew apart geocentric dogma, and though much of his theory was wrong, and it took years to be accepted, everyone with a basic education knows the planets revolve around the sun. Maybe we will never reach the point were we can create life or new species in a lab. It would be intellectually exciting but I hope we never do. I still have enough superstition and Old Testament echoes to believe there is some Forbidden Knowledge that is too dangerous for us to find.
That a Higher Intelligence, which I believe in, isn't considered in evolutionary theory doesn't bother me, and I don't think it should be forced into it and taught to other people's children.

Martin Oline

No One:
I too have had a NDE as you call it. I was in darkness but discerned some light in the distance. I attempted to "go" that way but was not coporal in the sense of having a body. I did seem to be getting nearer as the light became larger. It made me excited that I was making progress. I neared the light and saw shapes moving about. I had heard we sometimes are reunited with loved ones after death and was looking forward to that. When I got close I realized that they were all people I owed money! Fortunately at that moment I awoke on the operating table...


Addendum: 19 fold increase in scientific finding retractions, mainly due to falsification.


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