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Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 6:41 AM

We are lad to understand that the human as we know it, evolved from an ape like creature. From walking on all fours to upright and inventing, building, destroying and having wars.

If we have been around and inhabiting this planet side by side with other animals and apes, the question arises, why only has the human evolved to invent, destroy, build, wear clothes and kill and hunt for pleasure when all the other animals and apes have not evolved over the same time period to complete the same. Why have gorillas not build wooden houses for their families to live in or evolved to grow their own food crops. Why have they not created towns and villages to reside in. Why have only humans evolved to have many languages and have many beliefs of gods when animals have not done so over the same time period?

The only animal that kills for fun is humans, the only animal that creates wars is humans. And the only animals to over populate the planet is humans. All other animals only kill for necessity to survive.

Who stole the missing link? Are we all wrong in what has been taught to us and we now believe. Have we been lied to all along?

Why only have humans evolved far quicker than any other living animal on this planet if we originally were from ape like descendants?

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#1

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 8:13 AM

"evolved from an ape like creature"

We still are an ape like creature: in fact we are still apes.

"The only animal that kills for fun is humans"

huh? animals that kill for fun

"the only animal that creates wars is humans"

huh? territorial competition in animals

"And the only animals to over populate the planet is humans"

huh? overpopulation self adjustment in animals

"Why only have humans evolved far quicker than any other living animal"

The only unusual thing about humans is the higher development of certain specific parts of the brain. Many creatures have better memories. Many creatures have hugely superior smell processing ability. Many creatures have vastly superior sonar/echolocation (almost non existent in humans apart from a few blind people). Many creatures have much larger differential differences: elephants trunks and giraffes necks spring to mind (bats "fingers" etc. etc.).

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 8:33 AM

You are absolutely correct, Randall. Unfortunately, no amount of data or references will change the minds of some people. There is a word for such individuals but some find this word too offensive for CR4.

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#17
In reply to #1

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 12:15 AM

We are mixing biological evolution with cultural evolution. Similar principles, much different rates. Cultural involves cultural fertility, popular images, and the advantages of belonging.

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#32
In reply to #1

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 10:22 AM

I have read that gene loss has been decisive in the origins of the human species.

What I don't understand is how does science explain the greater genetic complexity of the past.

Doesn't the current origin of life theory assume that life came about by the evolution of simple stuff (the formation of simple protein molecules) to complex stuff (DNA etc)?

Please can anyone explain this to me in simple terms - it's been bugging me for a while.

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#44
In reply to #32

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 3:11 PM

It't a fairly simple concept: some genetic changes increase the chances of survival and reproduction, while other genetic changes decrease the chances of survival and reproduction. The former organisms and their progeny are still around, while the others have died out.

It should also be obvious that climatic variations produce changes in the food and water supplies. Some of those changes also lead to the extinction of species, especially inferior species. (I'll leave it to you to decide what "inferior" means.)

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#54
In reply to #44

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 4:27 AM

Thanks for the answer but it only addresses the process of evolution through gene change/mutation not through gene loss. As I understand it, both gene change and gene loss are at work in evolution. Gene change retains the gene material, but in a mutated form, while gene loss dispenses with 'redundant' genes.

Evolution through gene loss means moving from a more complex genome to a simpler one. This seems to go against the idea of life starting as a progression from simplicity to complexity.

How does that work?

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#58
In reply to #54

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 6:37 AM

The KISS principle.

Once things become too complicated, there is a need to simplify before continuing.

The iPod was a major success because it took everything which was unnecessary and threw it away to make space for the useful stuff.

Sometimes more is needed, but at other times there is previously useful stuff which becomes obsolete and gets removed.

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#61
In reply to #58

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 8:42 AM

You seem to have mis-understood my question - it was on how life began and produced a complex genetic structure in the first place not how/why it evolved from a more complex genetic form to a simpler one.

Evolution through gene loss is the 'downside' of the evolution complexity curve (i.e. towards less complexity), how did the upslope of the evolutionary curve come about (i.e. towards more complexity)?

I thought it was a simple question but no-one seems to have an answer.

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#68
In reply to #61

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 11:23 AM

In reply to your post #54, Gene loss IS one form of gene change.

In reply to your post #61, I believe GM1964 understood your post #54 full well. In fact, when I read your #54, the very first thing that came to my mind was the KISS principle.

More complex is NOT necessarily better, whether we are talking about living things or about inanimate objects. I spent years designing and building a series of complex machines to do a certain job. Then we discovered a much simpler way to build the machine. That simpler machine does a better job and is vastly more reliable than any of the previous, more complex ones.

The human tail is normally not noticeable. There have been plenty of times when I wished I had a prehensile tail to hold a part while using both hands to work on it. (that is wishing my body were more complex). Yet the freedom of movement allowed by not having a significant tail (being less complex), and/or some other factor, has determined that humans are better without tails.

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#70
In reply to #61

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 11:52 AM

Let us take the amoeba as an example.

It is a single cell organism, and reproduces by splitting in two.

At some point during the splitting, there will be a point at which the efficiency of the organism is greater than a single rounded cell.

The surface area - its source of food - is optimised as it splits, so it makes sense that some of these would have halted the split in order that they could maintain the increased food capability.

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#53
In reply to #1

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 3:42 AM

All the points mentioned by the questioned are valid and trigger an interesting scientific discussion. You have already contributed to it with your right-to-the-point answer. One may not be satisfied with this though and continue searching for better answers. Fair well, that's how science evolves (pun intended).

One cannot be questioned though: Evolution itself! Whatever nagging questions one feels the Evolution Theory still leaves unanswered, Evolution itself is an observable and undeniable fact. So the question's title should rather be: "is the Evolution Theory correct?"

One could believe that along with the natural selection there is an intelligent intervention that takes care so that the humans have a special treatment. For some reason, this species is selected to serve a divine cause, give meaning to the existence of the whole universe, etc. But this belief is mostly out of selfishness and the arrogance of a species that happened to survive alone out of other similar "advanced" species, like the Neanderthals and the Denisovans. I wonder how religious or broader philosophical believes would have formed, if all these species coexisted today. Maybe it is a necessity that only one intelligent species can eventually prevail - due to competition and increased capability to eliminate each other - or otherwise, all such species should assimilate with each other.

Moreover, human race reached the amazing achievements of today NOT so due to the evolution of its brain! Indeed some new traits, like e.g. fantasy, helped a lot in the process, but this difference was due to a handful of gene mutations. Nobody would expect such a enormous difference between the "achievements" between humans and other apes, and indeed, in the early phases of the presence of Homo Sapiens, nothing spectacular was achieved, beyond fire (which led to need of smaller teeth and thus more space for the brain). Meanwhile, the latest tens of thousand of years, there was not a significant "improvement" of humans (except from minor things, like skin color, height, endurance to certain diseases, ability to live on milk as adults, etc) to explain the boom of the latest, say, 7000 years. What we see today is not the product of evolution per se, but of culture!

The fact that certain pieces of knowledge and behavior are passed from generation to generation builds up enough critical mass to create this vast difference between us and the rest of the animals. But this is only superficial. All this can crumble to the ground if we suddenly are out of electricity, if economy collapses, if a medium-sized meteorite hits Earth, if a super volcano erupts, if a nuclear war happens. We will struggle to start from scratch, wishing that some among us will still carry with them the old knowledge and give a initial boost. Otherwise, we will return to the almost animal state, hunting for food. Our genes will be almost exactly the same.

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#3

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 8:48 AM

Evolution is clearly more correct than any other proposed idea for the diversity of life on this planet, including homo sapiens. This scientific theory is based on the many aspects of the present and former species found on this planet and not an ancient tome taught to children.

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#22
In reply to #3

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 9:22 AM

If our minds are merely the product of evolution and random chance, and there are/were no outside influences that guided any of it, can we really trust any human thought or theory?

Have you read about the The “Cambrian Explosion”?

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#24
In reply to #22

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 9:37 AM

"can we really trust any human thought or theory?"

Of course we can: that's exactly how evolution works. If random chance produces a strain of beings that have stupid thoughts and theories, then that strain quickly dies out.

The DNA which produces brains which make correct decisions based on the available evidence is the DNA with an evolutionary advantage.

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#25
In reply to #24

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 9:42 AM

Dat is true fer shure..the true blondes are becoming extinct.

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#28
In reply to #22

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 9:55 AM

Your comments do not present a cogent thought to me. This might be my fault or a language translation complication. I'll explain my confusion.

Each mind is not merely the product of evolution and random chance (of what?) occurrence. Ask any Psychologist about this. I expect they will likely agree with me. The rest of your compound sentence delves into perpetual Solipsism where not even one's own thought can be trusted. This leads to a circular logic paradox. If no thought or theory can be trusted then the premise of this cannot be trusted, too. {Rinse and repeat.}

I'm familiar with the Cambrian Explosion. I own many fossils from this period, including a Trilobite tie tack. What does the Cambrian Explosion have to do with anyone's mind or evolution?

Was that just something completely different?

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#30
In reply to #28

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 10:16 AM

If "Each mind is not merely the product of evolution and random chance (of what?) occurrence."

Then what could it possibly be the product of?

If we exist in our current form and function merely due to evolution, wouldn't that, by definition, state that our minds are also of evolution?

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#37
In reply to #30

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 11:20 AM

I made an implied request for you to clarify your position by embedding a question in the sentence you are quoting. Even though this is a minor point in my comment I'll make a more explicit question for you to possibly answer.

The universe is full of many random chance events. These events can be anything from the decay of an atom, the number of customers that appear between the half-hour of 1:00 to 1:30 PM at your favored store, the numeric roll of a die in a D&D game, to a myriad of other possible events. You did not specify what type of random event forms a mind. I would like to know, what type of random event do you believe forms a mind?

My primary point is your use of the word "merely" in your claim on what forms a mind. This reply is not a random jumble of letters, words, or concepts. This reply is intended to form part of your mind. I hope it does. It will prove that evolution and random unspecified events are not the only things that form a mind.

If you don't believe I made my point, then another word I earlier defined with a link might apply.

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#38
In reply to #37

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 12:18 PM

I don't believe random events (macro evolution) formed humans, or our minds.

The universe is anything but random and cannot be rationally compared with the roll of a die. If this were so it could not be scientifically documented.

Is name calling really necessary?

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#40
In reply to #38

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 1:49 PM

Yes, even Einstein hated the idea that the universe could be all random processes. Nonetheless, further work in the most fundamental study of the universe, Physics, has shown through quantum mechanics that the universe itself is fundamentally random.

You want scientific documentation of a random process self-forming structures, here is one deep report in microbiology.

One of the fundamental difficulties many have to accept the universe is random is we only have one observable universe. We, therefore, have only one sample set (scenario) to work from. However, using computer simulations allows for independent testing of many scenarios. Surprise, evolution happens in many simulations too.

If you intolerantly insist on your own opinion over any and all evidence, then you may have just picked a perfect name for yourself here.

Have a good day.

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#41
In reply to #40

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 2:00 PM

That must be "Leader" or "Visionary".

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#43
In reply to #40

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 2:54 PM

Just reading through (while at work) the first couple of paragraphs of your link, I believe may have you meant 'self-replicating' instead of "self-forming"?

Also from the article "likely provided some form of selection guiding single
nucleotides to form functional sequences....", if I am not mistaken, 'guiding' would have to come from something 'pre-existing' would it not?

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#47
In reply to #43

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 3:53 PM

From my initial "deep", microbiology link, in the blue highlighted box titled "Significance" are these three introductory sentences:

The structure of life emerged from randomness. This is attributed to selection by molecular Darwinian evolution. This study found that random templated ligation led to the simultaneous elongation and sequence selection of oligomers.

One cannot make a complicated process or this study any clearer or simpler, Dude.

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#87
In reply to #38

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 11:25 PM

In your case, yes. If you don't like being called a name, don't be it.

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#34
In reply to #3

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 10:33 AM

So how do you explain that humans have outstripped all other creatures on this planet when it comes to evolving genetically? Culturally is not in question here, only evolution of humans from their original proposed idea of ape like creatures to what we are now.

We have certainly shot ahead by leaps and bounds and no other animal has evolved so fast. Why not?

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#56
In reply to #34

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 5:32 AM

From reply #1

The only unusual thing about humans is the higher development of certain specific parts of the brain. Many creatures have better memories. Many creatures have hugely superior smell processing ability. Many creatures have vastly superior sonar/echolocation (almost non existent in humans apart from a few blind people). Many creatures have much larger differential differences: elephants trunks and giraffes necks spring to mind (bats "fingers" etc. etc.).

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#60
In reply to #34

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 8:23 AM

'... humans have outstripped all other creatures on this planet when it comes to evolving genetically...'

.

What is the basis for this claim?

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#95
In reply to #34

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/18/2021 3:34 PM

Competition drives innovation, and a successful society has room for thinkers and a complex society has many different skill sets that when working in collaboration produces more efficient methods and more sophisticated machines...this then produces a branch of society that must be taught to think critically and in an abstract manner...this then produces entertainment for the labor part of society....and that leads to adoration of that part of society which enforces growth and development of the mind...

Other species do not work in collaboration on the scale humans do....the exception here is indigenous peoples around the world where we find lack of widespread collaboration has forestalled societal evolution, but once integrated that changes...

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#4

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 8:52 AM

<...Why only have humans evolved far quicker than any other living animal on this planet...>

If it were any other animal then it would be called something other than Homo Sapiens, and it would be in a position to ask a similar question about itself. "What are the developmental features that have caused this?", which presses for analysis, is therefore a better question than a "Why?", which presses for philosophy.

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#5

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 9:24 AM

The great mystery, and relevant to your question, is consciousness - that is, self-awareness. To know that we know. To be aware of our mortality. To have a sense of right and wrong. The evolutionary advantage of consciousness is unclear. Except for very few other mammals that seem to exhibit a rudimentary self-awareness, most creatures are not conscious, and they do just fine. Why does the world need consciousness?

The biblical story of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil invokes divine intervention as an answer to this deep question. To the non-religious the temptation story is mythology, but nevertheless, rich in meaning. More recently, Arthur C. Clark suggests alien intervention as an explanation of our unique status among the earth's creatures (the black monolith in 2001: A Space Odyssey). In both stories the "scales fell from the eyes" of pre-humans quite suddenly. Thousands of years separate these stories, and to both, the advent of consciousness was, and still remains, a mystery.

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#6
In reply to #5

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 11:18 AM

"Consciousness - that is, self-awareness". Animals are self aware but that does not invoke evolution of species! Virus's evolve very quickly and they have no conscious mind.

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#7
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Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 12:16 PM

A sense of right and wrong requires self-awareness. A dog or cat cannot be described as evil as can a person, because a dog or cat are just behaving according to their natures, without self-reflection, without a moral conscience, without self-awareness. Your point about viral evolution is my point - consciousness is not a requirement of evolution, so it's evolutionary advantage is unclear.

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#8
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Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 12:39 PM

I don't think you are using self-aware correctly. I think empathy more accurately describes your point.

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#9
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Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 1:01 PM

No, I mean self aware. To be able to reflect upon your actions and assess their rightness or wrongness in accordance with a moral code. Empathy emerges from self-awareness. First was self awareness. Then the development (or the deliverance in the Judeo-Christian tradition) of a moral code. Only then comes the empathy of, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

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#11
In reply to #9

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 3:02 PM

That's not the definition I consider nor found in my link for self-awareness. Self-awareness does not require any moral code. Sociopaths are painfully aware of themselves but by definition, they disregard social morals.

Please don't get me wrong. I comprehend and agree with the point you are making. I also agree that "empathy" is not as accurate as "self-reflection", or "introspection" but it is closer than "self-aware." You're just using the wrong word.

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#12
In reply to #11

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 4:11 PM

Alright. I accept your provided definitions of self-awareness and self-reflection. In accordance with those definitions, first came self-awareness as per the (mythological or true depending on your worldview) Adam and Eve story. Their eyes were "opened". They knew they were alive, and they knew that they would die. Immediately following self-awareness came self-reflection. They knew good from evil. Then, with time, and knowing good from evil, came the development of a moral code. Then, from that, came empathy for others. Self-awareness was first, without which there could be no self-reflection, no moral code, no empathy. Self-awareness first separated us from the beasts, not empathy, and for that reason, and in consideration of your provided definitions, I remain satisfied with my use of it.

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#14
In reply to #9

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 6:54 PM

Evolution is the only theroy that makes sense. Anything else relies on blind faith.

Is the Judeo-Christian tradition your only example of a moral code? I can name any number of ploiticians, businessmen and even the clergy who CLAIM to be Christian but do not follow any moral code except to gain power and money.

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#15
In reply to #14

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 8:18 PM

In none of my comments have I denied evolution. I have stated that the evolutionary advantage of being self-aware, of consciousness, is unclear.

The Judeo-Christian moral code is the foundation of legal systems in western society, whether or not you accept the biblical account of how that code came to be.

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#26
In reply to #14

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 9:45 AM

Isn't much of evolution based on blind faith in that there is no actual evidence of macro-evolution, and such has never actually been observed or recreated?

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#55
In reply to #26

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 5:22 AM

"there is no actual evidence of macro-evolution"

huh? evidence of macroevolution

Of course it's never been observed or recreated: it takes a long time.

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#59
In reply to #55

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 7:59 AM

So you would agree there is an element of faith?

From the link you shared: "from the fossil record and DNA comparisons to reconstruct how various organisms may be related.

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#64
In reply to #59

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 10:14 AM

"So you would agree there is an element of faith?"

No: because something has never been observed does not mean that enough evidence to confirm that it is true has not been collected.

I did not share a specific link I shared link to a google search which anyone could have done prior to posting a preposterous claim.

But choosing a statement out of context from an article entitled "15 answers to creationist nonsense" was not likely to further your cause very much. Immediately following your quote it goes on to say

"These days even most creationists acknowledge that microevolution has been upheld by tests in the laboratory (as in studies of cells, plants and fruit flies) and in the field (as in the Grants' studies of evolving beak shapes among Galpagos finches). Natural selection and other mechanisms—such as chromosomal changes, symbiosis and hybridization—can drive profound changes in populations over time.

The historical nature of macroevolutionary study involves inference from fossils and DNA rather than direct observation. Yet in the historical sciences (which include astronomy, geology and archaeology, as well as evolutionary biology), hypotheses can still be tested by checking whether they accord with physical evidence and whether they lead to verifiable predictions about future discoveries."

And carries on to explain how macroevolution has been verified.

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#69
In reply to #64

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 11:44 AM

It was the link you shared, I make no claim to the link itself. I did pull a statement from the link you shared, this is true.

Microevolution/adaptation has been observed and documented and is not really debatable in my opinion.

At a very fundamental level, there are a couple issues (actually many more than a couple, but in the interest of time...) with macroevolution that seem to be insurmountable.

  1. How did a bunch of inorganic material all of a sudden spring to life?
    • With out the initial life spark, no other arguments matter as there would be no life to evolve
  2. Macroevolution seems to violate the 2nd rule of thermodynamics
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#71
In reply to #69

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 11:52 AM

Apparently the answer is KISS - see posts #61 & #68

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#73
In reply to #71

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 12:08 PM

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#80
In reply to #69

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 4:47 PM

No matter how much evidence you are presented you steadfastly hold to your belief.

Did you lose and "i" somewhere?

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#88
In reply to #69

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 11:39 PM

1. What evolutionist ever said that inorganic material "all of a sudden sprang to life." Thai is a dishonest straw-man characterization.

2. Evolution does not violate the Second Law. Increasing order in some part of a system is "paid for" by increased disorder in some other part(s). See Peter Atkins' The Second Law (in Life magazine Library of Science series.

3. Quit reading the ridiculous output of professional liars for Jesus.

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#89
In reply to #88

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/18/2021 2:53 AM

I agree with you on #1 (no all-of-a-sudden) and probably #2 (thermodynamics), but belief in the impossible has a survival function, and is part of evolution. It organizes belonging and contributes to perceived security, sometimes by justifying risk. The believers may not see it that way because of another principle: "if you see it, you lose it." I connect this belief to the comfort felt by us all as babies who get our food and warmth, but can't understand explanation, and learn logic and rational thinking later on, against a strong background of "make-believe." This infancy theory may be flawed or wrong, but the use of miraculous events to organize people, including moralities, to enable cooperation still remains.

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#16
In reply to #7

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/15/2021 11:24 PM

Have you never seen a dog, that got caught doing something wrong, skulk away slowly with its tail between its legs? There is no doubt in my mind that dogs and cats (at least some of them) do indeed have some awareness of right and wrong. I believe this indicates some level of self-awareness/ self-reflection.

Of course what you consider right and wrong for a dog probably does not coincide exactly with what the dog "considers right and wrong".

There is no doubt that a well-trained dog modifies its behavior in an attempt to please its master. If that doesn't illustrate self-reflection, then what would?

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#27
In reply to #16

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 9:54 AM

You could easily train a large dog to attack anyone in a wheelchair, and it would thoroughly enjoy wounding or even killing the disabled person, and if on some occasion it did not not attack as trained, and you scolded it, it would exhibit the signs you describe that it had misbehaved. If the dog were truly self-aware, self-reflective, knew good from evil, had a moral code, felt empathy, then it would be necessary to utterly break the dog's spirit before it could be trained to arbitrarily attack a wheelchair bound person.

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#31
In reply to #27

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 10:19 AM

I will never argue with you.

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#39
In reply to #27

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 1:13 PM

All of that would be the fault of a seriously depraved trainer, not of the dog.

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#42
In reply to #39

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 2:04 PM

Of course, and under the law the dog's owner would correctly be held responsible for the injuries/deaths caused by the dog because, again correctly, the law recognizes that a dog cannot determine right from wrong, contrary to your earlier assertion.

To be self-aware is what first distinguished us from the beasts. It is an unexplained mystery how and why this occurred, since the evolutionary advantage of self-awareness is not clear. From it flowed self-reflection, knowing right from wrong, developing a moral code. No other creature on earth shares these attributes. Another poster has received many 'good answer' votes for pointing out the similarities between humans and beasts. It puzzles me why such observations should receive applause. Yes, there are biological similarities, but we are separated from animals in some mysterious way, and our self-awareness is part of that mystery. Why, when I encounter a wolf in the forest, the wolf, which could tear me apart, runs in fear from me? I submit that it senses something foreign and strange about me, about humans, that set us apart from them and all creatures, maybe even sets us apart from this earth. Why and how did this happen?

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#49
In reply to #42

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 3:57 PM

The concepts of "right" and "wrong" are clearly learned, not innate. There are many things that I consider to be "wrong", while there are other humans who consider the same things to be "right'.

There are plenty of examples of non-human animals scolding their offspring for doing something they should not have done. Thus the concepts of right and wrong do exist outside the human race, in some form.

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#50
In reply to #49

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 8:22 PM

A mother duck's corrective nip to one of her ducklings is not evidence of the mother duck's knowledge of good and evil, nor evidence of a broader moral code among ducks. That nip is an instinctive protective Darwinian action.

We are not ducks, and human knowledge of good and evil, and the encoding in law of that knowledge, does not follow the Darwinian blueprint, which would define what benefits you most as the purest right and good. But remarkably, what benefits you most (stealing your neighbour's ox and his ass and his wife) is defined under our moral code as wrong. This is not comparable to the Darwinian corrective scolding among animals that you describe.

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#51
In reply to #50

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/16/2021 9:46 PM

but it does follow the Darwinian blueprint, as it allows cooperation and belonging which optimizes survival. That is what cultural evolution is about. Humans as well as ducks are amoral, but we use morality as framework for cooperation.

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#65
In reply to #51

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 10:19 AM

I was expecting that response. It is Darwinian if it is interpreted as a tribal code, ensuring tribal co-operation and survival. If the code does not apply to other tribes, and your tribe has some strength (knows how to use clubs, for example) then it could dominate and exterminate the other tribes. In the biblical account that is indeed how the moral code was first interpreted and how it worked. But over time that changed. Later prophets advised the people to, "Be kind to the stranger for you too were once strangers in a strange land." The moral code gradually became universal. It applied to the tribe in the next valley, and even to tribes in distant lands. A moral code that protects all tribes, the weak and the strong, is not Darwinian.

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#72
In reply to #65

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 11:59 AM

"A moral code that protects all tribes, the weak and the strong, is not Darwinian."

That is an opinion, not a fact.

Every one of us has strengths and weaknesses. If I had lived in a world where I had to physically fight others to survive, I'd have been gone many decades ago. Yet I've had strengths that made others eager to keep me around. THAT is part of Darwinian selection.

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#74
In reply to #72

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 1:17 PM

Although we have moved beyond the tribal stage, that moral code is still with us. It is the foundation of our legal system. It protects the intelligent, like yourself, and it also protects the weak-minded. If it were Darwinian, it would protect only you.

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#76
In reply to #74

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 2:13 PM

"If it were Darwinian, it would protect only you."

NO! There are plenty of individuals who may have had less intellectual success than me, but have other strengths that make them valuable. There are also plenty of people who have had intellectual success way above my level, but very few who have the combination of knowledge and skills in Physics, Electronics/Electricity, Computers, Repair, and Machining that I acquired over the years. I'm nowhere near top-of-the-field in any of those areas, but the combination has made me valuable to many others.

Other combinations of knowledge and skills can make "the weak-minded" valuable to mankind and society, and to Darwinian progression.

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#77
In reply to #76

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 2:28 PM

Doesn't the term 'valuable to mankind' require some type of outside rater?

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#81
In reply to #77

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 4:59 PM

Why? Could you explain why humanity cannot rate anything as valuable? I rate many things all the time as valuable or not to me.

You present a lot of unsubstantiated opinions as if they were self-evident facts.

"i"

Look what I found. I think it should be valuable to you.

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#82
In reply to #81

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 5:03 PM

We are speaking about evolution, aren't we? Seems to me that was the topic?

How can a blind process have the ability to determine the 'human value' of an individual?

Isn't evolution a process that 'just happens'?

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#84
In reply to #82

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 5:23 PM

Helen Keller determined the value of an individual when others wouldn't. She was blind and deaf. She was determined to get humanity to value the "disabled."

Stevie Wonder determined the value of his newborn daughter.

I was speaking about your inability to present anything but your own unsubstantiated opinion. I now see your opinion include dismissing the blind. You offend me.

Have an "i", you need one to go with your broad-stroke labeling of people.

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#106
In reply to #84

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 8:41 AM

Then this should doubly offend you!!

double-blind

You seem to be fixated on the letter 'i' you should maybe 'seek' help.......

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#108
In reply to #106

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 9:03 AM

So is that your only goal here, to offend me? That's pretty sad.

Maybe you're trying to say here that a double-blind process can produce value to humanity. But you also asked, "How can a blind process have the ability to determine the 'human value' of an individual?" Are you answering your own question with a blind process that can determine human value? Are you disputing that Stevie Wonder is a blind process or that his daughter is an individual?

I hope you like quotations from witty people. I particularly like Tom Leher's second quote here.

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#109
In reply to #108

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 10:47 AM

It is never my goal to offend anyone and I am not easily offended.

As a matter of fact, I believe at a minimum, 3 times you alluded to my missing an 'i' and in my opinion, that was an ad hominem attack on my character. This was explained in your posts that (in your opinion) I had a closed mind and refused to consider any other ideas. I don't believe we have ever met in person so that would seem to be a judgement on your part that I can tell you, is not actually correct.

I find (for myself) that when I point my finger at someone there are 3 of fingers pointing back at me.

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#122
In reply to #109

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 9:53 PM

To me, you present to be "a person who is obstinately or intolerantly devoted to his or her own opinions and prejudices." You refuse to consider, even for reflection, anything but your own opinions. If that observation offends you then you should stop resembling that quote.

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#128
In reply to #122

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 10:18 PM

Not offended in the least.

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#86
In reply to #82

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/17/2021 10:36 PM

What is your definition of "a blind process"?

I don't consider evolution a blind process, because over time, it results in organisms that are superior to their predecessors in some way. Here, "superior" simply means better able to survive and multiply under the current conditions. An organism that is superior today may not continue to be superior in the long term.

Mankind may well end up exterminating itself, but I'm confident that there will be other organisms that will survive after mankind is gone, such as cockroaches and tardigrades, and probably some more highly developed animals that spend most of their time underground. This is still Darwinian progress.

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#110
In reply to #86

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 10:48 AM

By blind process, I mean that is not controlled by an outside influence (no designer if you will).

When considering evolution as a process doesn't one have to consider the entirety of the process and not segment out portions of the process as proof?

How did evolution start? To me that is where the theory (or hypothesis) of evolution struggles.

What was the initial life spark? I am, by no means, a biologist but for something to evolve, it has to evolve from something, doesn't it?

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#111
In reply to #110

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 12:17 PM

"How did evolution start? "

Isn't it obvious? As soon as there exists an organism that reproduces with even slightly imperfect copies of itself (as in genes mutated, missing, or added), some of those imperfect copies will have some slight advantage and be slightly more able to survive and replicate than others, so there will be more of them. Over time, the more viable copies will outnumber the less viable copies, and eventually, the less viable strain will die out. Rinse and repeat...

There is no need for any "outside influence" or "designer".

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#112
In reply to #111

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 12:30 PM

My question would be where does the organism that exists, come from?

Inorganic material has to become a life force prior to evolving. That life force would require the correct DNA sequencing which, even in a single cell organism is a very complex component.

It would seem to me the equivalent of knocking over a box of Alphabets cereal and discovering that a novel was the resulting mess!

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#114
In reply to #112

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 3:11 PM

The first knocking over would only result in words of two or perhaps three letters.

I'm very far from an expert in biology of any kind, but I presume there were many iterations of very simple organisms that would fit the definition of "living" (able to cause the creation of new organisms like themselves) long before they became sufficiently complex to include anything close to modern DNA.

Over millions of Earth years, and many more generations, the complexity gradually increased, eventually reaching current levels.

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#115
In reply to #114

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 3:24 PM

That big presumption is the one that has to be made in order to explain life on earth. Unless we say "it came from somewhere else" - but that just kicks the can down the road.

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#116
In reply to #114

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 3:44 PM

To me that presumption is a statement of faith, not trying to offend at all.

"able to cause the creation of new organisms like themselves"

I don't know that present day humans, with all our advanced knowledge can do this (I could definitely be wrong) we can reproduce, but can we 'create new organisms'? If so wouldn't there need to be some type of design intent? Could the basic single cell life forms have design intent?

"Over millions of Earth years, and many more generations, the complexity gradually increased, eventually reaching current levels."

This seems to contradict the 2nd law of thermodynamics? Isn't the entire universe constantly increasing in entropy?

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#117
In reply to #116

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 5:25 PM

"...we can reproduce, but can we 'create new organisms"

If reproduction (having babies) isn't creating new organisms, I don't know what would be...

The second law of thermodynamics only applies to closed systems. All living things require a source of energy, Our principal source of energy is the Sun, directly or indirectly. Earth, or any subdivision thereof that sustains life, is NOT a closed system.

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#118
In reply to #117

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 7:57 PM

Many posts have avoided the question of religious miracles and belief in inexplicable ideas, events, etc., which I see as a needed carryover from infancy. If we can't explain what happened at the beginning, so what? It doesn't prove conscious creation or intelligent design or anything else. I don't know is I don't know. But we see functions of religions that drive that imperfect engine, favoring group, not individual, survival. That's part of cultural evolution.

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#120
In reply to #118

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 8:55 PM

"Many posts have avoided the question of religious miracles"

I agree

"and belief in inexplicable ideas, events"

I disagree, it is clearly evident in this thread, that either view of how living things got to this point in history involves belief in inexplicable ideas, events.

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#161
In reply to #120

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/22/2021 8:29 PM

I misexplained. The belief in illogical, scientifically impossible ideas is important, but we have not talked much about its function in cohering a group which helps survival. What threatens our belief in impossibles/miracles is threatening the distortions of reality that we need for sanity, so must be resisted. That's (partially) why all the resistance to vaccination, fear of whatever sounds chemical, and more.

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#127
In reply to #118

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 10:18 PM

Yes. i've avoided mentioning religion because I don't want to offend others.

Yet it's pretty clear to me. The ancients had a God for each major thing they didn't (couldn't) understand: Thunder, lightning, fire, the sun, etc. Once men understood each of these, there was no longer a need for the corresponding God, so they were relegated to mythology and the naming of miscellaneous games, places etc.

There are still plenty of things that people don't understand, so most still hang on to a belief in some form of God.

i shouldn't have to explicitly say where the logic of this leads...

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#145
In reply to #127

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/21/2021 7:50 PM

Agree. But what do you think of my observation that all of us get comforts from the unexplainable in infancy, and it's an uncomfortable (hence often avoided) process to unlearn this dependency in the real world. To paraphase Archimedes, "don't disturb my miracles."

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#146
In reply to #145

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/21/2021 9:42 PM

If you are confronted by a tiger, do you get comfort from thinking it is only a rabbit?

--Steven Pinker

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#163
In reply to #146

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/22/2021 10:50 PM

Absolutely, if I based my feeling of security on miracles. I could accept stories that my co-belongers believed in or maybe invent my own, as with miracles anything is possible, and the more unbelievable the miracle, the more powerful the miracle-doer, my protector. There was even a play years ago which had a man seeing a 6-foot rabbit.

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#164
In reply to #163

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/23/2021 12:30 AM

You would be comforted, but soon would be dead. If that's the move for you, go for it.

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#165
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Re: Is evolution correct?

12/23/2021 1:48 AM

That's not the move for me. I said "If."

Re belief IN miracles, this is good example of "if you can see it, you can't be it."

I'm too much of a realist.

Probability and numbers get in here, too. There was a tiger loose in Houston for a week last year, didn't eat anyone as far as I know.

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#147
In reply to #145

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/21/2021 10:36 PM

Simple answers for children are perfectly understandable. We all were or still are children. In the immortal words of Joan Rivers, "Oh grow up."

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#149
In reply to #145

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/22/2021 12:26 AM

Sorry, but I have no memory whatsoever of my infancy. I have a few memories in the 3-6 yo range, but all of them deal with specific incidents, and none of them were unexplainable.

Unfortunately, I had already retired from teaching before I truly understood how different people think with totally different thought processes. Clearly yours are different from mine!

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#162
In reply to #149

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/22/2021 8:32 PM

Doesn't matter what you remember. Unconscious remembers a lot, including times when unable to understand explanations.

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#119
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Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 8:11 PM

Actually, our universe is a closed system and everything that exists in that system is a part of that system.

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#121
In reply to #119

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 9:50 PM

That is irrelevant. No one is disputing that. However, as has already been pointed out, the earth is not a closed system. Your refusal to understand that has become tiresome, perhaps even more so to a God than to humans.

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#124
In reply to #121

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 10:07 PM

Sorry, the earth is a closed system. Only energy is transferred at the boundary.

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#131
In reply to #124

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/20/2021 11:18 PM

And that transfer of energy guarantees that Earth is NOT a closed system, so life can continue here (until mankind screws it up!).

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#132
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Re: Is evolution correct?

12/21/2021 12:12 AM

The beauty of making up one's own private definitions is that one can "win" all sorts of arguments. Of course, such activity is intellectually criminal. When this is humanly detected, all the more so would it be divinely detected. I suspect this person's theology is even sillier than his/her "science."

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#133
In reply to #132

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/21/2021 7:09 AM

Interesting accusation.

You have, in all likelihood, used Google to fact check me.

I can only assume that you could not dispute what I stated so, it would seem you regressed to an ad hominem attack.

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#134
In reply to #124

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/21/2021 7:27 AM

"the earth is a closed system. Only energy is transferred at the boundary."

That's like saying a bucket is closed: you can only put things in at the top.

Sorry bgot, but your refusal to understand this branch of the thread does seem to be almost deliberate in a way.

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#135
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Re: Is evolution correct?

12/21/2021 8:16 AM
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#141
In reply to #135

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/21/2021 2:23 PM

That's very unconventional. I doubt that many scientists would accept the "closed system" part, although other parts of the presentation seem fine.

And even then, since he specifically allows energy in and out, that allows the entropy to change in either direction. So your entropy argument is still totally bogus; i.e., false witness.

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#142
In reply to #141

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/21/2021 2:46 PM

Right on both counts! This scientist certainly does not accept that definition of a "closed system". I was always taught that a closed system is what the linked article calls an "isolated system".

I did notice, near the bottom of the article, an instance of using "there" when it should have been "their". Such errors immediately reduce my estimate of the quality of the article.

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#144
In reply to #135

Re: Is evolution correct?

12/21/2021 3:28 PM

This lecturer seems to have a problem understanding her own definition. He says that matter does not go in or out of a closed system. However, the earth does receive matter in the form of meteorites and asteroids, for instance. In the context of the presentation, this is a minor flaw. Latching onto it, though, is a significant mistake.

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