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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Exploding Darwinist myths while revealing their conundrums

Darwinism has so many problems.   First, major points for which naturalism has no answer at all because there is no substance involved.   I bring this up often because a critical thinker absolutely needs to consider these four points carefully, for entire worldviews depend on these four topics:

Life
Information
Thought
Existence

Scientists can usually tell whether something is alive or dead but have failed to find some kind of material that constitutes life.  There is no substance called "life."   On top of that no Darwinist has the slightest idea how life could have developed from non-life.   They will tell you "they are working on it" while in fact they know it is chemically impossible.  They are just going to stonewall it as long as the general public has not figured this out.   I am of course doing my best to make this obvious using evidence instead of derision and assaults on my knowledge, certifications or character.  Go for it!   Doesn't change the evidence which you cannot deal with intelligently.

Scientists know what information is, they just cannot find any substance to it nor a natural source for it.  The pathetic attempt to sound "science-y" to to give mutations credit for information.   Well, you have to have information to begin with in order to mutate it.  Mutations are also mistakes and breaks so they hardly qualify as new information, they are breaks in information strings.   Giving mutations credit for producing new information is like crediting a car accident for manufacturing the car.  I'm sorry for being critical but I have logically proved this without doubt and the Darwinists keep giving back the same old falsified BS so, hey, it is what it is.

Thought is becoming more and more astounding to science.  We see large portions of the brain lighting up but we cannot associate the activity with the thought.   The more we look inside the brain the more complex it becomes, but beyond that we cannot directly connect synapses firing with what is being visualized or considered by human beings.   We cannot segregate and identify a material substance labeled "thought" so, again, naturalistic materialism fails and is falsified by the evidence.

Finally, existence is an obvious problem.   Darwinists can use all the terminology the like but they still say that nothing expoded to make everything and that doesn't sound like science, does it?  Wishful thinking perhaps but in no way science.

Now, fossils have been an issue recently.   As previously pointed out, the Geologic Column is a myth and is a lie.

Second, uniformitarianism is dead.   The sedimentary rock layers are catastrophic in nature, which is why they are often packed full of fossils.   Think now, how often are fossils being formed in your neighborhood?   Things die, they decompose and get converted to raw materials that will be recycled with a certain amount of energy loss in the process.  Fossils happen occasionally now and quite quickly but always in fluky ways.   Nothing is making millions of bottom-dwelling creatures into fossils right now because there is no world-wide flood.

The following articles have an increasing techical bent until, by the third article, you are considering semi-technical material using many terms and names you may not be familiar with, but the logic and reasoning are sound so I do recommend you soldier on to the end if you would?  Thanks!  It is hard to make a strong point if the final massive straw is not dumped on the camel's back.

Fast fossils


Billions of well-preserved fossil fish clash with popular belief.



For most people, the two words ‘fast fossils’ don’t seem to go together. Say ‘fossils’, and they think ‘slow and gradual processes; millions of years’. Unfortunately, even though many leading evolutionists are now conceding that catastrophic, rapid processes are needed to explain many fossils, the average person is still left with this deeply-ingrained belief.

If the fossil record did take millions of years to form, then the Bible is wrong about the history of the earth and life on it. Fossils show death; there are also many instances of disease (see T-rex with gout, e.g.), violence and bloodshed evidenced in the fossil record. So, if these existed millions of years before there were people, then the Bible is wrong when it indicates that these ‘bad’ things are part of the Curse on creation, which only came about because of the rebellion of the first man, Adam, against his Creator.

However, the Bible is the very Word of God, affirmed as absolutely true by the Lord Jesus Christ (e.g. John 10:35). Thus, we can expect the evidence to be consistent with what the Bible teaches, regardless of how many people believe otherwise. According to the book of Genesis, there was a global catastrophe—a world flood which by implication was capable of burying billions of creatures rapidly in sedimentary layers.

So, reasoning from Scripture, we would expect that most fossils were formed by rapid processes. What does the evidence show?

The fish fossil shown here [Ed. note: Please see Creation 19(4):24–25, September 1997; due to copyright restrictions.] is a wonderfully preserved specimen. Though not all are as beautifully preserved as this one, there are literally billions of fish fossils in rocks around the world, so well preserved that they still show details such as scales, fin structure, etc. In fact, most people would have seen such fossil fish at one time or another.1

not the same fish, but there are two for the price of one!

What do these billions of well-preserved fossils fit—the common belief in slow and gradual processes, or the biblical implications of fast burial?

The easiest way to answer this is to imagine what happens to a fish when it dies. After (for most) floating on the surface while being attacked by various scavengers, what is left (if anything) sinks to the bottom. Here, rather than lying quietly for thousands of years being gradually covered up by slowly settling sediment, it will be attacked further by fish, crabs, and many other creatures.

Bacterial attack will also contribute to the process of disintegration. Even in a sterile, low oxygen environment, the flesh rapidly becomes soggy and falls apart,2 leaving no trace of the beautiful structures which the fossil illustrated, for example, shows. That is why, when snorkelling on the sea floor, one does not see thousands of dead fish resting quietly on the ocean bottom in part-way stages of fossilization!

To preserve such features, it is obvious that the creature needs to be buried quickly. Not just that, but the enclosing sediment needs to harden fairly quickly. If it stayed soft and unconsolidated for years, the fact that oxygen, moisture and bacteria could easily access the carcass means that one would very quickly have a disintegrated, stinking mess. To try to imitate how such features as scales and fins can possibly be preserved, the best experimental analogy would be to bury a fish rapidly in wet cement!

How would hordes of fish be buried during the Flood? The upheavals necessarily associated with a year-long global Flood would generate ideal conditions for rapid sedimentation. Today, for example, localized earthquakes can trigger large submarine avalanches (called ‘turbidity currents’) which have been clocked as carrying millions of tonnes of sediment at over 50 kph (30 mph) underwater.3

The silent testimony of the billions of well-preserved fossil fish around the world is, by the most obvious common sense, to rapid processes—rapid burial and rapid hardening (of the encasing sediment). Sadly, the mindset of our culture is such that most people miss the obvious, and continue to think ‘slow and gradual’ when they see fossils—even beautifully preserved ones like this.

References and notes


  1. Since marine creatures would be the most likely ones buried—land creatures would tend to disintegrate and rot—we would expect that most fossils would be marine. Marine fossils do indeed represent more than 95% of the fossil record (see J. Morris, The Young Earth, Master Books, p. 70, 1994).
  2. This has been shown by experiment—see R. Zangerl and E. Richardson, The paleoecological history of two Pennsylvanian black shales, Fieldiana: Geology Memoirs 4, 1963.
  3. F. Press and R. Siever, Earth (4th Edition), W.H. Freeman and Company, New York, p. 284, 1986.
~~~~~~~~~~
    So how about the so-called sequential fossils in the rocks?  Propaganda.   Paleontologists play fast and loose with fossil and layer identification as pointed out, below.   It is true sometimes it is out of ignorance or confusion but, hey, you guys are supposed to be professionals!

    How well do paleontologists know fossil distributions?



    It is unfortunate but true. Similar fossils can be given different names when found in strata of different supposed ages. This practice masks the true range of the fossil within the geological time scale. In a recent example, even though the fossils were almost identical, they were assigned to different species. Such practices multiply the number of names, confuse our knowledge of fossil distribution, and hide the fact that the geological column may well be compromised.

    It would be great if we could know the actual three-dimensional distribution of the fossils in the earth. This would go a long way towards understanding their deposition during the Flood. Usually all that is available is a fossil sample along a cliff, ravine or some other cut into a particular formation.

    One might think that good extrapolations have been made from these limited, two-dimensional outcrops and that the fossil content in the remainder of the formation is well understood. But some surprises would be in store if we could actually know the distribution of all the fossils in the formation. The more the sedimentary rocks of the earth are examined, the more the fossil ranges are expanded—especially downward.

    One such surprise occurred on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada, when a sponge of Upper Triassic ‘age’ (the standard geological time scale is used for communication purposes only) was discovered in a carbonate formation.1 It was named Nucha? vancouverensis sp. nov. Now, the formation where the sponge was found is considered a standard reference for the North American Triassic because of its ammonoid index fossils. Surprisingly, the sponge is nearly identical to one previously found only in the Middle Cambrian of western New South Wales, Australia, named Nucha naucum.2

    In spite of the obvious similarity, because the Vancouver Island specimen was not exactly the same as its Australian counterpart, a question mark was placed after its genus name and it was given a different species name. Still, the researcher who reported the find, George Stanley, believes the similarities are striking enough to put the fossil in the same genus.

    The Vancouver Island fossil is used to support some very large geological ideas—that an exotic terrane3 (the Wrangellia terrane) was plastered onto the western side of the North America plate from an unknown, tropical-ocean locality. The problem is that the two fossils are located on opposite sides of Pangaea, the hypothetical, huge ancient landmass of the Paleozoic. Their respective oceans were supposedly separated by thousands of kilometres of continent.

    Because it was previously only known from Australia, Nucha is considered a Tethyan taxon from the Paleozoic tropics.4 So the two fossils, although very similar in appearance, are separated greatly in space and time.

    Stanley downplays the significance of the separation in time: ‘The absence of Nucha between Middle Cambrian and Late Triassic time is somewhat of a conundrum.’5 The reason for this nonchalant attitude toward a fossil not found during a supposed 300 million-year period and separated spatially by a considerable distance is, I believe, because this case is not isolated.

    In fact, Stanley mentions several examples and refers to other authors who know of a number of other examples. These seeming anomalies are referred to as ‘holdover taxa’, ‘refugia species’, or even ‘Lazarus taxa’. Of course, if a representative of the fossil is found alive today, it is called a ‘living fossil’. The importance of such holdover taxa to paleontologists is stated by Stanley:

    ‘Of great interest to paleontologists and evolutionary biologists alike is the occurrence of relict or holdover faunas, also known as Lazarus taxa. These taxa, mostly at family, genus, and species levels, appear to leapfrog large intervals of geologic time, including the recovery phases following mass extinctions. They seem to elude our most concerted sampling efforts, failing to be accounted for over considerable intervals of time.’2

    What lessons do such holdover taxa have for creationists? First, they show that geologists and paleontologists do not know the three-dimensional distribution of fossils, although they may have reasonable estimates in isolated formations. There have been and will always be surprises. Fossils seem to be constantly extending their geological time ranges. We should be sceptical of statements to the effect that a particular fossil is an index fossil that is restricted to, say, the Cambrian ‘period’, or the Permian ‘period’, etc.

    Second, such holdover taxa make it hard to believe that the alleged millions of years between the fossil occurrences are real. Where was the organism living all those millions of years? Why is there no fossil record of its existence throughout all that time? In this particular example, paleontologists may eventually find fossils of this sponge between the ‘Middle Cambrian’ and the ‘Upper Triassic’. Even so, the fossils would still be very scarce between these two ‘periods’ and a few finds would not alter the obvious conclusion that the time gap is illusory.

    Third, a fossil can be assigned to a different species because it is found at a supposed different geologic time, obscuring the true range of the taxon within the geological time scale. In the case of Nucha, the difference between the Vancouver Island sponge and the Australian sponge was slight, but the former fossil was given a different species name with a question mark after the genus name.

    Similar practices with other taxan contribute to the multiplication of names and a more limited distribution of taxa. Thus, the true range of any organism is likely broader than one is led to believe by the examination of its taxonomy.

    Since much variability is present within any given organism and hence its fossils, paleontologists often do not know where to draw the line in their classification schemes. Different names for nearly identical fossils are probably common. This tendency to give different names to similar fossils found in formations with supposedly different ages, even to placing them in different superfamilies, has been demonstrated by Tammy Tosk for the microfossils called foraminifers.6

    John Woodmorappe found that much of the stratigraphic order in the ammonoids is due to time-stratigraphic concepts and taxonomic manipulations.7 This is particularly serious because particular types of foraminifera and ammonoids are used as index fossils for dating formations.

    Geologists do not know the three-dimensional distribution of fossils in the rocks, and tend to invent different names for similar fossils, just because they are found in strata of supposedly different ages.8 This does not engender confidence in the geological column they construct, or in the fossil-dating scheme on which it is based.

    Acknowledgement


    I thank Peter Klevberg for reviewing the manuscript and for providing input into this issue.

    Related articles


    (Oh, yes they are!)

    References and notes


    1. Stanley, G.D., Jr, A Triassic sponge from Vancouver Island: possible holdover from the Cambrian, Canadian Journal of Earth Sciences 35:1037–1043, 1998. Return to text.
    2. Picket, J. and Jell, P.A., Middle Cambrian Sphinctozoa (Porifera) from New South Wales, Memoirs of the Association of Australian Palaeontologists 1:85–92, 1982. Return to text.
    3. A terrane is a fault-bounded geologic entity distinctively different from its adjoining neighbour. Return to text.
    4. Stanley, Ref. 1, p. 1037. The Tethys Sea is a hypothetical, Palaeozoic sea on the east coast of Pangaea, located in the tropics between Laurasia in the north and Gondwana in the south. Return to text.
    5. Stanley, Ref. 1, p. 1042. Return to text.
    6. Tosk, T., Foraminifers in the fossil record: implications for an ecological zonation model, Origins 15(1):8–18, 1988. Return to text.
    7. Woodmorappe, J., The cephalopods in the creation and the universal deluge: in: Studies in Flood Geology, 2nd edition, Institute for Creation Research, El Cajon, CA, pp. 177–197, 1999. Return to text.
    8. Dietz, R.S. and Holden, J.C., The Breakup of Pangaea, Scientific American, 1970; Quoted in: Press, F. and Siever, R., Earth, 4th ed., W.H. Freeman and Co., New York, p. 518, 1986. Return to text.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
     
    Way back in 2000, John Woodmrappe pointed out how messy the whole Darwinist fossil story had become.   We'll update this later but consider this post your invitation into the 21st Century in understanding fossils...more to come!

    The fossil record

    Becoming more random all the time

    Summary

    The reality of the geologic column is predicated on the belief that fossils have restricted ranges in rock strata. In actuality, as more and more fossils are found, the ranges of fossils keep increasing. I provide a few recent examples of this, and then show that stratigraphic-range extension is not the exception but the rule. The constant extension of ranges simultaneously reduces the credibility of the geologic column and organic evolution, and makes it easier for the Genesis Flood to explain an increasingly-random fossil record.


    Different kinds of fossils do not occur randomly. Instead, they tend to be found at specific horizons, and these horizons can be located in rocks all over the world. For example, the evolutionist asks us why a layer of rock containing trilobites is never found to contain dinosaurs, and why a layer with dinosaurs is always found above one with trilobites and never the reverse. Fossil succession can be viewed in terms of solitary fossils, commonly called index fossils. Otherwise, groups of fossils can be used. These are often called fossil assemblages or assemblage zones. The essence of fossil succession, however, remains the same whether individual fossils, of groups of them, are used.

    For approximately the last two hundred years, this succession of fossils in sedimentary rock has been used to argue that the earth has undergone successive events. For instance, trilobite-bearing beds are supposed to reflect a time when trilobites were the dominant life form on earth, and dinosaur-bearing beds are supposed to reflect a time when dinosaurs were dominant on the earth. However this view is weakened because the range of fossils from one supposed time period keeps extending and overlapping fossils ostensibly typical of another period of time in the past. In this article, I will examine some examples of increases of overlap of fossils that are assigned to different geologic periods of time.

    Implications of fossil succession

    At first, Bible-believers tried to cope with this discovery of successively-different types of fossils by retreating from the single Creation and Flood as clearly described in the Bible and replacing them with a series of creations and global floods. That was Baron Cuvier’s compromise, and it did superficially seem to account for multiple and differing horizons of fossils. But Cuvier’s notions obviously violated Scripture. The Word of God teaches only one episode of special creation, and only one global Flood, not many!

    As is the eventual fate of all compromises, it was only a matter of time before any semblance to Scripture (in this case, the multiple creations and the multiple floods) had been dropped altogether. After Darwin, evolution was added to the picture, and thus the notion of transformation of one life-form to another replaced the earlier belief that each horizon of fossils represented a separate creation and world-destroying flood. Both considerations, of course, tacitly suppose that each type of horizon of fossils represents a distinctive period of time over which the particular organism lived.

    But what are the ramifications of fossils seeming to occur in multiple, different horizons in the earth’s rock strata? Is the succession of life-forms, over long periods of time, the only way to explain the succession of fossils in earth’s sedimentary rocks? Certainly not.

    Creationists, including myself,1 have provided a variety of alternative explanations for fossil succession. These include such mechanisms as the sorting of organisms during the Flood, differential escape of organisms during the same, ecological zonation of life-forms in the antediluvian world (such that different life-forms in different strata reflect the serial burial of ecological life-zones during the Flood), and TABs (Tectonically-Associated Biological Provinces—wherein different life forms occur in successive horizons of rock as a reflection of successive crustal downwarp of different life-bearing biogeographic communities).

    All of these mechanisms do away with the notion that horizons of fossils demand successive passages of time during which the organisms lived. In other words, they allow for there to have been only one set of mutually-contemporaneous living things on a young earth, instead of a repetitive replacement of living things over vast periods of time. Most of the earth’s sedimentary record is viewed as being deposited by the Noachian Deluge, and not over successive depositional events in analogues of modern sedimentary environments on an evolving earth.

    Unfortunately, some modern creationists have also bought into the belief that successive fossils represent horizons of time. These neo-Cuvierists have, as their original namesakes, relegated the Noachian Deluge to only a small fraction of the earth’s fossiliferous sedimentary rocks. This contradicts common sense as well as Scripture. After all, if all kinds of life had been created by God in six normal-length days several thousand years ago, then all fossil and contemporary life-forms must have been contemporaneous, and it makes absolutely no sense to use succession of fossils to delineate time-stratigraphic horizons in sedimentary rock.

    For example, although trilobites and dinosaurs were contemporaries of each other, there is no basis for believing that trilobite-bearing and dinosaur-bearing rocks were necessarily deposited at the same time all over the world. During the Flood, trilobite-bearing beds at one point on earth were probably being deposited at the same time as dinosaur-bearing beds at another place on earth.

    Nor can it be said that, when dinosaur-bearing beds locally overlie trilobite-bearing beds, the former are significantly younger than the latter. This, of course, excepts the small amount of difference in time, within the Flood, that elapsed between the burial of the trilobites and the burial of the overlying dinosaurs.

    Just how real is fossil succession?

    The irony of the position taken by Cuvierists, neo-Cuvierists, and standard evolutionary-uniformitarians is the fact that fossil succession is a reality only to a limited extent. As we shall see, the Flood-related mechanisms discussed above need not have been overly efficient to account for only the limited degree of fossil succession that does exist. Successive episodes of time, however conceived, also are completely unnecessary to explain the limited degree of fossil succession.

    When we consider the fact that fossil succession is limited in overall extent, it is another way of stating that there are many fossils which are found at many stratigraphic intervals. In fact, only a minority are confined to rocks attributed to only one geologic period.2

    Since the early days of the acceptance of the standard geologic column, fossils have been turning up in ‘wrong’ places as more and more fossils have been collected, and this process continues to this very day.3,4,5 And even this does not include the numerous instances where fossils are supposed to be reworked from older strata, often with no independent supporting evidence.6

    Furthermore, extension of stratigraphic ranges occurs not only for individual fossils, but also for presumed grade of biologic complexity (that is, so-called stratomorphic intermediates). A stratomorphic intermediate is supposed to reflect a certain grade of complexity attained by all living things up to a certain point in the geologic time scale. An example would be the first appearance of vertebrate legs in the stratigraphic record. I will discuss stratomorphic intermediates shortly. Let us now consider some recent examples of stratigraphic range extension.

    Dasycladalean algae

    As a result of a recent find, a dramatic increase in the stratigraphic range of Dasycladalean algae has occurred. Dasycladales are members of the algal family Dasycladaceae. It consists of 175 live and extinct genera. The extension of this plant has been into presumably-older strata:
    ‘Uncatoella possesses a suite of features usually associated with late Mesozoic and Cenozoic Dasycladales, and our proposed relationships imply very large range extensions (200-350 Myr) to some groups.’ 7
    This stratigraphic-range extension is dramatic, and equivalent to more than half of the entire Phanerozoic geologic column. Moreover, this discovery upends earlier notions of stratomorphic intermediates that were believed to be true of the evolutionary history of plant-reproductive traits:
    ‘Choristospore gametangiophores are usually associated with Mesozoic and Cenozoic Dasycladales, but the new data on Uncatoella show that this form of reproduction had already developed by the Early Devonian.’ 8
    Many evolutionists, and also unfortunately some professing creationists, have made much of the presumed significance of stratomorphic intermediates. But, as the above example proves vividly, it takes only one well-placed life-form to completely demolish existing notions of stratomorphic intermediates. A certain grade of complexity can be moved back considerably earlier in time with just one discovery of fossils! In the above example, a grade of morphological complexity, formerly believed to be of relatively recent origins (Mesozoic and Cenozoic) suddenly has become much more ancient (Devonian).

    Pipiscids

    The pipiscid group of metazoan animals represents another example of an extension of fossils into much older strata. Formerly thought to be restricted to the Upper Carboniferous, remains of possible pipiscids have now been discovered in Cambrian strata.9 If the identification is correct, this find suddenly ages the pipiscids by nearly five geologic periods.

    The foregoing instances may perhaps be belittled by the fact that both marine plants and soft-bodied fossils are said to have a poor fossil record, and hence stratigraphic-range extensions are perhaps not so surprising for that reason. But this consideration cannot possibly be applicable to the remaining examples in this report because their respective fossil records are good to excellent.

    Agnathan (jawless) fishes

    Many groups of fossils appear suddenly in the Early Cambrian. This is so much so that it is often called the ‘Cambrian explosion’. As more and more fossils experience a stratigraphic-range increase down to the Early Cambrian, the ‘Cambrian explosion’ becomes more and more pronounced. Apropos to this, vertebrates have just recently been found in the Early Cambrian of south China.10 These are agnathan fish, whose previous undisputed earliest appearance had been in the Lower Ordovician.

    The therapsid reptile Lystrosaurus

    Fossils of the mammal-like reptile, Lystrosaurus, are so common, notably in South Africa, that it is said that paleontologists don’t even bother to pick up specimens when they see them at their feet. Lystrosaurus is an important index fossil. Directly or indirectly, it is used to correlate Early Triassic continental beds throughout much of the southern hemisphere. Let us therefore consider the implications of the recent discovery of Lystrosaurus in the Permian of Zambia.11 Without question, it can no longer be straightforwardly believed, on uniformitarians’ own terms, to represent a horizon of time and to correlate strata accordingly:
    ‘… the widespread Lystrosaurus, hitherto regarded as characteristic of the Lower Triassic, cannot be used in isolation as a biostratigraphical zone fossil … The occurrence of Lystrosaurus in Late Permian rocks indicates that isolated specimens of the genus should no longer be used for biostratigraphical purposes … use of Lystrosaurus alone could be misleading. This is obviously unfortunate, since Lystrosaurus is the most common genus in many assemblages and so most likely to be encountered in the course of stratigraphical work.’11
    There are other implications of the fact that Lystrosaurus-bearing rocks can no longer automatically be assumed to be Early Triassic. The supposed chain of evolving mammal-like reptiles is placed in chronological sequence largely through the use of Lystrosaurus, or on spore-bearing beds which are correlated with beds containing Lystrosaurus. In fact, for decades at least, beds all over the southern hemisphere have been assigned to the lowermost Triassic solely because they contain Lystrosaurus.12

    In view of the extension of this genus downward into the Permian, the chronological sequence of mammal-like reptiles needs to be re-examined. It is more than possible that some ‘more mammal-like’ therapsids will now be found to be contemporaneous with ‘less mammal-like’ therapsids. At worst, the entire chain of mammal-like reptiles and their presumed progression to mammals will come crashing down. A detailed analysis of the intercontinental correlation of the relevant strata should be undertaken to evaluate this possibility.

    The Permo-Triassic boundary is conventionally believed to have been one at which there had been a greater turnover of living things than at any other comparable interval throughout the Phanerozoic fossil record. It is therefore interesting to note that this discovery admittedly blurs the distinctiveness of the Permo-Triassic boundary,13 as do a variety of other, transitional Permo-Triassic faunas and floras.14

    The sponge Neoguadalupia — another Permo-Triassic boundary ‘violator’

    Up to now, all of the examples discussed have been ones where specific fossils have unexpectedly been found in strata older than where they were ‘supposed’ to be found. The remaining examples in this work are fossils whose stratigraphic ranges have been extended into presumed younger rocks. To show that Lystrosaurus was no fluke in terms of the crossing of the Permo-Triassic boundary, consider the sponge genus Neoguadalupia oregonensis. Formerly assumed to be found in strata no younger than Permian, it has been discovered in the Triassic (and Upper Triassic at that) in Oregon.15

    The bivalve Camptochlamys

    Let us now turn our attention to the K-T (Cretaceous-Tertiary) boundary. Consider the implications of Camptochlamys found occurring in the K-T beds of the North Slope, Alaska:
    ‘The occurrence of Camptochlamys extends the chronostratigraphic and geographic range of this genus, previously unknown from any strata above the uppermost Jurassic (Tithonian) of Europe and unknown from any strata in North America.’16
    In this particular instance, we have more than a stratigraphic-range extension. We also have a contradiction between this particular fossil’s stratigraphic occurrence in European strata, and that of North America. So much for the myth that there is a consistent succession of fossils from one continent to another! Of course, this is not the only such instance. Whenever a fossil is listed as having a long stratigraphic range (say, Cambrian to Devonian), this range may conceal a contradictory stratigraphic occurrence of the fossil from one part of the world to another. Thus, the fossil in question may occur in only Cambrian rock on one continent, only in Ordovician rock on another continent, only in Silurian on another, and only in Devonian on still another continent.

    Let us now take a closer look at the K-T boundary. Second to the Permo-Triassic boundary, in terms of faunal turnover, is the K-T boundary. It is at this boundary that dinosaurs, ammonites, and other Mesozoic animals became extinct, according to standard evolutionary-uniformitarian interpretations. Yet more and more hitherto-believed Cretaceous life-forms are turning up in Tertiary rock. These include marine fossils, for which a poor fossil record cannot be used as an excuse for their appearance beyond the ‘proper’ stratigraphic intervals. And these do not include the many instances of late Cretaceous life forms found in earliest Tertiary rock, for which a reworking rationalisation is frequently invoked.

    The gastropod Parafusus

    The remaining example in this report is an erstwhile Cretaceous fossil that has turned up in Tertiary strata. Formerly restricted to Upper Cretaceous rocks, members of the gastropod Parafusus have been found in large numbers in the Palaeocene rocks of northeastern Mexico.17

    The norm or the exception?

    Are the foregoing examples of stratigraphic-range extensions, and thus the corresponding randomisation of global fossil succession, the exception or the rule? To begin with, it must be stressed that the instances discussed in this brief report are hardly comprehensive. To the contrary, they are in fact only those instances which have inadvertently come to my attention while I was in the process of researching other topics.

    So how common are stratigraphic-range extensions? Two recent comprehensive databases of the stratigraphic occurrence of fossils give a clear answer to this question. Maxwell and Benton18 have compared the stratigraphic ranges of all of the fossil vertebrate families (excluding Aves, which have a spotty fossil record) as perceived in 1966–1967, and again in 1987. For 96 families, there was no change in stratigraphic range. Another 87 fossil families went through a decrease in their accepted stratigraphic range. Yet considerably more families (150) underwent an increase in the amount of strata which they overlap. This trend is even more evident in fossil marine families. In just ten years (1982–1992), Sepkoski19 reports that 513 fossil families underwent a decline in their stratigraphic range. A decline in range may mean that the first and/or last occurrence had been misidentified. But whatever the cause, the number of fossil-range declines is dwarfed by the 1026 families that enjoyed an increase in either their first occurrence, or their last occurrence, or both.

    Clearly, then, extension of stratigraphic ranges is the rule and not the exception. This is even more remarkable when we remember that there is the ever-present evolutionary bias which tends to cause overemphasis of minute differences in fossils located in different horizons of strata, and hence the proliferation of questionable taxonomic names for essentially the same organism found at different stratigraphic horizons.

    The disappearing geological column

    Let us now examine the progressive randomisation of the fossil record in the light of the history of the geologic column. Modern researchers are not the first to notice the progressive extension of fossil stratigraphic ranges with increasing collection of fossil specimens from the world’s sedimentary strata. During the time that parts of the geologic column were still being worked out in the mid 19th century, the Victorian philosopher Herbert Spencer commented on the illogicity of the geologic column in his appropriately-named essay, Illogical Geology.20 In doing this, Spencer could hardly be accused of creationist bias. After all, he was a hardened atheist who had been an enthusiastic supporter of both social Darwinism and ‘scientific’ Darwinism.

    One of the things Spencer challenged was the use of fossils for the correlation and dating of strata. Specifically, he took issue with the practice of using particular fossils as supposed time-markers for the global correlation of strata, and then not questioning the whole procedure when frequently finding such fossils in the ‘wrong’ strata with further collecting of fossil specimens.21 As we have seen, the finding of fossils in previously-unrecognised stratigraphic horizons has continued unabated to this very day, and dwarfs anything that Spencer could have been familiar with. What would Spencer think were he alive today?

    Let us take the aforementioned occurrence of Lystrosaurus to its logical conclusion. Since Lystrosaurus has always been used to correlate rocks into time-equivalent horizons, and to place them all into the Early Triassic, the Permian find of Lystrosaurus should now mean that Permian and Triassic are contemporaneous! An analogous line of reasoning should lead to the position that Cretaceous and Tertiary are now contemporaneous because the Upper Cretaceous genus Parafusus is now known from Early Tertiary rocks.

    Of course, the uniformitarians would never follow their own reasoning to its logical conclusion because it would lead to the very reductio ad absurdum discussed in the previous paragraph. At minimum, it would require the uniformitarians to acknowledge the fact that the Permian-Triassic and Cretaceous-Tertiary are now respectively contemporaneous. Such a conclusion, of course, destroys the very foundations of the geologic column, and is unthinkable to standard uniformitarian dogma. In order to paper over this fatal flaw in the geologic column, uniformitarians simply back-pedal, discard Lystrosaurus as well as other once-esteemed index fossils as time-stratigraphic indicators, choose other index fossils as presumed time-indicators, and otherwise act as if nothing has happened in terms of empirical evidence. This enables them to go right on believing in such things as the Permian, Triassic, Cretaceous, and Tertiary periods. Heads I win, tails you lose. Clearly, the evolutionary-uniformitarian geologic column has become protected from falsification. To the uniformitarian, no possible fossil discovery would ever count as evidence that would invalidate the sacrosanct geologic column. It is thus clear that use of index fossils and assemblages of such fossils for correlation of strata is an exercise in special pleading.

    Some scientific creationist implications

    Clearly, now more then ever, creationist scientists should resist the temptation of buying into any sort of scheme which presumes that fossils can be used to delineate time-horizons in the earth’s sedimentary rocks. Even at the local level, fossil succession is related to Flood-related processes instead of changes in fauna over time. This fact discounts neo-Cuvierism. And, for the mainstream diluvialist, the extension of stratigraphic ranges has implications in terms of Flood-related depositional processes. As the fossil record comes closer to randomness, proposed Flood-originated non-temporal mechanisms22 for fossil succession need to be less and less efficient in order to account for a fossil succession that is becoming more and more crude as more and more fossils are gathered23 .

    Related article

    References

    1. Woodmorappe, J., Studies in Flood Geology, 2nd Edition. Institute for Creation Research, California (USA), 1999; see especially pp. 41–61. Return to text.
    2. Woodmorappe, Ref. 1, pp. 25–26. Return to text.
    3. Oard, M.J., Evolution pushed further into the past, CEN Tech. J. 10(2):171–172, 1996. Return to text.
    4. Oard, M.J., How well do palaeontologists know fossil distribution? CEN Tech. J. 14(1):7–8, 2000. Return to text.
    5. Woodmorappe, Ref 1, pp. 26, 97, 135. Return to text.
    6. Woodmorappe, Ref. 1, pp. 87–94. Return to text.
    7. Kenrick, P. and Li, C-S., An early, non-calcified, dasycladalean alga from the Lower Devonian of Yunnan Province, China, Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology 100:73–88, 1998. Return to text.
    8. Kenrick and Li, Ref. 7, p. 83. Return to text.
    9. Shu, D., et al., A pipiscid-like fossil from the lower Cambrian of south China, Nature 400(6746):746–749, 1999. Return to text.
    10. Shu, D., et al., Lower Cambrian vertebrates from south China, Nature 402(6757):42–46, 1999. Return to text.
    11. King, G.M. and Jenkins, I., The dicynodont Lystrosaurus from the Upper Permian of Zambia: evolutionary and stratigraphical implications, Palaeontology 40(1):149–156, 1997. Return to text.
    12. Dingle, R.V. et al., Mesozoic and Tertiary Geology of Southern Africa. A.A. Balkema, Rotterdam, pp. 26–27, 1983. Return to text.
    13. King and Jenkins, Ref. 11, pp. 149, 153. Return to text.
    14. King and Jenkins, Ref. 11, p. 154. Return to text.
    15. Senowbari-Daryan, B. and Stanley, G.D., Neoguadalupia oregonensis new species: reappearance of a Permian sponge genus in the Upper Triassic Wallowa Terrane, Oregon, Journal of Paleontology 72(2):221–224, 1998. Return to text.
    16. Waller, T.R. and Marincovich, L., New species of Camptochlamys and Chlamys (Mollusca: Bivalvia: Pectinidae) from near the Cretaceous/ Tertiary boundary at Ocean Point, North Slope, Alaska, Journal of Paleontology 66(2):215–227, 1992. Return to text.
    17. Vega, F.J. and Perrilliat, M.C., Molluscan survivors of the K/T event in Paleocene strata at La Popa Basin, northeastern Mexico, Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs 31(1):A-36, 1999. Return to text.
    18. Maxwell, W.D. and Benton, M.J., Historical tests of the absolute completeness of the fossil record of tetrapods, Paleobiology 16(3):322–335, 1990. Return to text.
    19. Sepkoski, J.J., A compendium of fossil marine animal families, 2nd edition, Milwaukee Public Museum Contributions to Biology and Geology No. 83, p. 7, 1992. Return to text.
    20. Spencer, H. Illogical geology; in: The Works of Herbert Spencer, 13:192–210, Proff and Company, Osnabrilck, Germany, 1859 (reprinted 1966). Return to text.
    21. Spencer, Ref. 20, p. 207. Return to text.
    22. Woodmorappe, Ref. 1, pp. 41–61. Return to text.
    23. Gee, H., Only skin deep, Nature 344(6269):904, 1990. Return to text.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
     
    Unlike the desperate clinging of Darwinists to crumbling hypotheses and falsified assertions,  Creationists are working up a new Baraminology to complete the work of Linnaeus.   They are working on plotting three-dimensional plots of fossil layering to better identify the various flows and stages responsible for those layers and eventually introduce a new more accurate naming convention for the flood layers and the post-flood layers and formations.
     
    Projects have been ongoing to correct dating methods, identify actual causes of formations like the Grand Canyon and numerous buttes and mesas found in the Southwest.   Identifying forces like rapid plate subduction have added to our understanding of some of the forces associated with the Flood but much work remains to be done.  While Darwinists cling to fairy tales and work hard at cranking out propaganda and seek to censor information that falsifies or questions Darwinism, the Creationists are working on science.   Also, ID folks are also working on science, and their findings tend to support the Creationist worldview.
     
    Some Old Earth Creationists have been something of a hindrance to the advance of knowledge but eventually OEC come to the point of deciding to trust fallible man or infallible God.  Me?  I am going with God.

    70 comments:

    Jon Woolf said...

    Yawn. SSDD.

    Well, you have to have information to begin with in order to mutate it.

    No, actually you don't. This is a highly esoteric and abstract realm of thought that not everyone can handle, but it's true nevertheless. Information doesn't exist without a context, and the same data-string in different contexts can mean different things. When a new context develops, the same data can acquire new meaning - new information. It's entirely legit to say that the 'information' in DNA developed as the context of the DNA changed, from nonliving proto-organic fluid, to something in between, to a functioning cell.

    Jon Woolf said...

    As for the matter of fossils found 'out of place,' and the claim that this demolishes the concept that the fossil record is sequential -- nonsense. As usual, your creationist sources have assembled an argument that is half doubletalk and half misdirection. Case in point:

    "As a result of a recent find, a dramatic increase in the stratigraphic range of Dasycladalean algae has occurred. Dasycladales are members of the algal family Dasycladaceae."

    Well no, actually. "Dasycladales" is an order (a larger taxon than a family) of green algae. Dasycladales algae are known from as far back as the Ordovician, so the extension of Uncatoella to the Devonian isn't really all that much of a surprise. Algae are primitive organisms that tend to not evolve very fast or very much. There are many cases of algal species appearing nearly unchanged throughout the fossil record.

    The marvelous 'fish eating fish fossil' is one of several known from the Green River Formation. The Green River Formation is a well-known lagerstatte for fish. The conventional explanation for these fossils is that Fish A tried to eat Fish B, but Fish A choked on the overlarge meal, died in midgulp, and sank to the lake bottom where it was buried and fossilized. I don't see any reason to reject that explanation, although I would add that Fish B may have had some sort of defenses, such as venomous spines which killed Fish A outright, or barbed spines which jammed Fish B in Fish A's throat.

    Jon Woolf said...

    Now, on to Lystrosaurus.

    A check of the primary literature shows that yes, Lystrosaurus was once used as a primary index fossil for the Triassic. Mr Peczkis got that much right. And yes, that particular idea got shot down when specimens of Lystrosaurus were found in Permian strata. But now let's hear .... The Rest Of The Story.

    First of all, logic tells us that some therapsids must have survived across the Permo-Triassic extinction - otherwise there would have been no ancestors for the cynodonts and eventually the mammals. So the discovery that Lystrosaurus did exactly that actually fills a gap in our knowledge of the fossil record.

    Second, Lystrosaurus's status as a one-fossil index marker should never have survived this long. When I studied historical geology in college, the rule was that one species is not enough to establish a firm index marker. You need an assemblage of species, from many different taxonomic groups.

    Third, the Zambian rocks in which this Lystrosaurus was found are roughly dated as Latest Permian - just before the Permian-Triassic border. If they were Early Permian, that would be a problem. Latest Permian, not so much.

    This paper gives details on the Zambian specimens of Lystrosaurus that Peczkis is talking about. Buried deep in the paper is an interesting point that Pezckis doesn't mention: the Zambian Lystrosaurus was assigned to L. curvatus, which is the most anatomically primitive of the several known species of Lystrosaurus. That's consistent with it also being the oldest-known species of the genus: L. curvatus was the ancestral form, and the other Lystrosaurus species evolved from it.

    In sum, Lystrosaurus is not the silver bullet you so desperately seek: an advanced organism found long before any possible ancestor for it.

    radar said...

    Better commenters, please. Millions upon millions of fossils and you think fish just float down to the bottom and get preserved? You don't know biology. Everybody go check your lake and river bottoms and look for all the recent fossils there? Won't be any. As soon as a body dies there are microorganisms within that begin to feed on it and organisms from without that do so as well as the breakdown of flesh no longer getting refreshed and sustained.

    I do hope you realize, Jon, that your "proto-organic fluid" is as meaningless and imaginary as "protoplasm" was as the definition of the what a cell consisted of back in the early days of Darwin and Huxley before people understood what a cell was.

    Your pontification about how this is a higly esoteric and abstract realm = BS! In other words, you either no nothing about Chemistry or you prefer to pretend you know something you don't. The proteins and sugars required to build the cell language are found in the cell and not in the wild because they cannot form in the wild. They are also a complex coding language not a bunch of random materials. Furthermore they work in concert with the cell. Beyond that, these building blocks are formed in laboratories with chirality problems. It is expensive for a lab to separate right and left-handed and then charge for the job done. But no one can use them for testing if they are not all one-handed and you know this if you know anything at all, so quit lying and pretending on the comments thread.

    Data is not necessarily information, go check out the definition of information again. Wrong.

    Finally, address the chemical barriers to the formation of the components of DNA before you try to write long and meaningless comments. Biochemists know that the components react with other agents and are not able to be built in the wild or survive there. That is why your answer is irrelevant.

    Anonymous said...

    "Millions upon millions of fossils and you think fish just float down to the bottom and get preserved?"

    That's not what Jon said, is it?

    "You don't know biology. Everybody go check your lake and river bottoms and look for all the recent fossils there? Won't be any. As soon as a body dies there are microorganisms within that begin to feed on it and organisms from without that do so as well as the breakdown of flesh no longer getting refreshed and sustained."

    Now take a deep breath and have another look at what Jon wrote:

    "The conventional explanation for these fossils is that Fish A tried to eat Fish B, but Fish A choked on the overlarge meal, died in midgulp, and sank to the lake bottom where it was buried and fossilized."

    Anonymous said...

    "In other words, you either no nothing about Chemistry or you prefer to pretend you know something you don't."

    I suspect he "nos" a lot more about it than you. :-)

    Anonymous said...

    "First, major points for which naturalism has no answer at all because there is no substance involved."

    You're consistently stuck on this point that, say, life has to be a substance according to metaphysical naturalism. That's either a misunderstanding or a misrepresentation.

    Life is not a substance, but a process, or rather a series of interdependent processes. In this regard it's not a problem for naturalism at all, just because there's no substance called "life" involved.

    You might as well say that there's no substance called "wind", therefore naturalism can't explain wind. Perhaps this makes it a little clearer how nonsensical this line of argument is.

    Anonymous said...

    "Data is not necessarily information, go check out the definition of information again. Wrong."

    Clearly you didn't read Woolf's comment very carefully, since he claimed nothing of the kind.

    highboy said...

    Has anyone observed information forming from un-intelligent sources?

    Anonymous said...

    "Has anyone observed information forming from un-intelligent sources?"

    Speciation in lab experiments and in the wild would qualify IMO. I'd also include breeding of, say, different dog or cow breeds. Five dogs of drastically different breeds in total contain more genetic information than, say, five closely related wolves.

    What one might term "unintelligent design" is also neatly modeled in genetic algorithms. The results of such algorithms (the famous examples being the NASA antennas) are not consciously designed, and yet they exhibit advanced functionality that humans consider wildly creative.

    radar said...

    Yes, highboy, the comments by anonmymous below you for instance.

    Speciation uses existing information in the genome. In fact anonymous is quite wrong. Five fairly commonplace types of a kind would probably have MORE gentetic informtion than five specifically bred and speciated types, because speciation breeds OUT information. Ask any animal breeder how they develop a breed and you will find they breed out the characteristics they do not want and only breed for specifics, thus culling the genetic pool available and thereby getting the qualities desired. You are completely backwards on this subject.

    Genetic algorithms are formal programs and I think my engineering friend Kevin summed up nicely why they do not in any way help the Darwinist cause.

    GA is run on a program on a computer and is designed to produce a set of random variations in hopes of getting some combination that is better suited for the project that is involved. You need hardware, software and operating systems and you need to have targets you hope GA will generate. GA is packed full of information and design and requires information and intelligence to determine what results are optimal. It is completely useless as a proof for Darwinism.

    radar said...

    I have to admit this, I am taking this comment:

    "Well, you have to have information to begin with in order to mutate it.

    No, actually you don't. This is a highly esoteric and abstract realm of thought that not everyone can handle, but it's true nevertheless. Information doesn't exist without a context, and the same data-string in different contexts can mean different things. When a new context develops, the same data can acquire new meaning - new information. It's entirely legit to say that the 'information' in DNA developed as the context of the DNA changed, from nonliving proto-organic fluid, to something in between, to a functioning cell."

    I am going to pass this to some scientists I know. It may win the award for science-y complete BS comment of the year!

    Anonymous said...

    "Speciation uses existing information in the genome. In fact anonymous is quite wrong. Five fairly commonplace types of a kind would probably have MORE gentetic informtion than five specifically bred and speciated types, because speciation breeds OUT information."

    You've frequently made this claim. What exactly is the evidence for it?

    Seems like it would be testable.

    Have creationists ever researched this, and found it confirmed? Or is it just made up?

    Jon Woolf said...

    As soon as a body dies there are microorganisms within that begin to feed on it and organisms from without that do so as well as the breakdown of flesh no longer getting refreshed and sustained.

    Unless the body happens to land in an environment where there are few decomposers around. Which can happen in a freshwater lake, if the bottom few inches are largely anoxic. No oxygen means no decay.

    Your pontification about how this is a higly esoteric and abstract realm = BS! In other words, you either no nothing about Chemistry or you prefer to pretend you know something you don't. >

    It's not chemistry that's the esoteric and abstract realm, it's information theory. Though you clearly don't know as much as you think you do about chemistry either:

    The proteins and sugars required to build the cell language are found in the cell and not in the wild because they cannot form in the wild.

    Well now, that's an interesting statement in light of the fact that many organic molecules are found in the wild, or can be (and have been) formed in lab experiments: amino acids, RNA bases, simple carbohydrates...

    Back to information theory, though. First, here are seven letters: B, F, O, T, R, S, I. Do they mean anything to you? How about if I rearrange them into F-O-R-T-S-I-B? Still nothing? Okay, how about now: B-I-F-R-O-S-T?

    What does this phrase mean: "Who cooks for you? Who cooks for you all?" Is it just a question in English, or is it something else?

    What is a mule? Is it:

    1) a hybrid between a horse and a donkey?
    2) a hybrid specifically between a jack and a mare?
    3) any cross-species hybrid that is viable in its own right, but sterile?
    4) a character in a famous SF series?
    5) a flight-deck plane tug on an aircraft carrier?
    6) a meaningless string of letters?

    Or perhaps something else entirely?

    You see, 'information' is a tricky thing to pin down. Change the context, and you change the meaning. A few random pieces of RNA or DNA, when set end to end, suddenly become the pattern for a piece of a protein. Assemble the same pieces a different way, and you get a different protein. Or maybe none at all. Which is the 'right' meaning of those DNA-bits? If a piece of DNA never gets transcribed, does that mean that piece has no information in it?

    radar said...

    Jon Woolf. You still believe in "baffle them with BS" and I won't play. Incoherent ramblings.

    Have creationists tested speciation and confirmed? Animal husbandry has been around for many centuries and for that matter, plant manipulation as well. Long before Mendel came up with a simple methodology to genetics people were breeding plants and animals to breed out all but the desired qualities. Thus grass was manipulated to become corn. Ordinary wolf-dogs and wild dogs were bred to come in all sizes and shapes and etc. All breeders know you breed everything else out to keep the characteristic you want. So this was known before both Darwin and Mendel.

    radar said...

    Yes, Jon, there are organic molecules found in the wild. But in order to form the right ones needed for DNA are there any in the wild that have formed from non-living materials? Are there any that are all one-handed? Is there any process found that converts non-living materials into sugars and proteins needed or do you need to manipulate and preserve in lab settings to produce them?

    The answer is that no, you never see these form from non-living materials and no, the components that would have to assemble in the wild will react with other chemicals long before they could assemble.

    You cannot find a chemist that can describe a path for random elements to assemble into DNA because there are hard chemical barriers to the formation of them in the wild. Period.

    As for information theory you apparently think you are an expert but have never been able to give me a source from nature for information and you don't because you can't. I took time to carefully explain from Werner Gitt's book some of the requirements for information and for the transmission and receipt thereof. I suggest commenters look into what Dr. Gitt has to say and ignore what non-experts say on the matter.

    Anonymous said...

    "Have creationists tested speciation and confirmed? Animal husbandry has been around for many centuries and for that matter, plant manipulation as well. Long before Mendel came up with a simple methodology to genetics people were breeding plants and animals to breed out all but the desired qualities. Thus grass was manipulated to become corn. Ordinary wolf-dogs and wild dogs were bred to come in all sizes and shapes and etc. All breeders know you breed everything else out to keep the characteristic you want. So this was known before both Darwin and Mendel."

    Way to change the subject. Mere animal husbandry doesn't support your claim that speciation breeds OUT information, i.e. that it represents a reduction of information.

    Is there any scientific evidence that genetic information is lost in speciation? Anything at all?

    Have creationists posed ways to test this, and tested them and found them confirmed?

    Because if they haven't, then this seems quite speculative, doesn't it?

    Anonymous said...

    "As for information theory you apparently think you are an expert but have never been able to give me a source from nature for information and you don't because you can't."

    Yes he did, many times. You can't blame him for the fact that you failed to understand it.

    "I took time to carefully explain from Werner Gitt's book"

    Come on, cutting and pasting his article isn't "carefully explaining", nor does it take a lot of time.

    "some of the requirements for information and for the transmission and receipt thereof."

    - which were easily disproven with a few concrete examples.

    "I suggest commenters look into what Dr. Gitt has to say and ignore what non-experts say on the matter."

    You are talking about the same Werner Gitt that declared his own hypotheses "laws", the same Gitt who needlessly slandered NASA scientists, apparently because their practical scientific work happened to contradict his beliefs?

    I suggest commenters keep that in mind when they read Gitt's work.

    radar said...

    Now take a deep breath and have another look at what Jon wrote:

    "The conventional explanation for these fossils is that Fish A tried to eat Fish B, but Fish A choked on the overlarge meal, died in midgulp, and sank to the lake bottom where it was buried and fossilized."


    Okay, seriously? We have several fossils of animals eating animals and animals giving birth. When a fish dies and sinks to the lake bottom it gets scavenged and becomes carrion. In order to get buried quickly enough to be fossilized there has to be a quick burial that is so anerobic that even bacteria don't get to break everything down before the speciment is preserved. Furthermore fish and crayfish and or crabs and various other underwater creatures will immediately be drawn to a carcass.

    The very minute something dies there are organisms within that will begin to operate to degrade the body unless oxygen is cut off to the body. Water-driven layers of sediment can do this. A mudslide might do it. A freesing loess storm could also preserve by freezing rather than burial preservation.

    This is how forensic scientists determine human time of death. If in the first hour or two liver temperature can be used, but otherwise it is by the amount of decay and the kinds of carrion-eating creatures that are used to determine time of death. Dead things decay unless a very unusual situation like a world-wide flood are in play.

    But if something goes to the bottom of a lake or river it gets attacked by various organisms and is quickly devoured. Like I said, go ahead and dredge your local lake and see how many fish fossils you find. It will be the null set.

    radar said...

    Now take a deep breath and have another look at what Jon wrote:

    "The conventional explanation for these fossils is that Fish A tried to eat Fish B, but Fish A choked on the overlarge meal, died in midgulp, and sank to the lake bottom where it was buried and fossilized."


    Okay, seriously? We have several fossils of animals eating animals and animals giving birth. When a fish dies and sinks to the lake bottom it gets scavenged and becomes carrion. In order to get buried quickly enough to be fossilized there has to be a quick burial that is so anerobic that even bacteria don't get to break everything down before the speciment is preserved. Furthermore fish and crayfish and or crabs and various other underwater creatures will immediately be drawn to a carcass.

    The very minute something dies there are organisms within that will begin to operate to degrade the body unless oxygen is cut off to the body. Water-driven layers of sediment can do this. A mudslide might do it. A freesing loess storm could also preserve by freezing rather than burial preservation.

    This is how forensic scientists determine human time of death. If in the first hour or two liver temperature can be used, but otherwise it is by the amount of decay and the kinds of carrion-eating creatures that are used to determine time of death. Dead things decay unless a very unusual situation like a world-wide flood are in play.

    But if something goes to the bottom of a lake or river it gets attacked by various organisms and is quickly devoured. Like I said, go ahead and dredge your local lake and see how many fish fossils you find. It will be the null set.

    Anonymous said...

    "Genetic algorithms are formal programs and I think my engineering friend Kevin summed up nicely why they do not in any way help the Darwinist cause."

    You mean, you summed whatever Kevin said with an unknown (and probably quite large) dose of your own spin. We'll believe that Kevin said that when you have him comment himself. You don't get to cloak yourself in his credibility while preventing any open discussion with him.

    highboy said...

    "Speciation in lab experiments and in the wild would qualify IMO. I'd also include breeding of, say, different dog or cow breeds. Five dogs of drastically different breeds in total contain more genetic information than, say, five closely related wolves."

    That isn't information being formed from an unintelligent source. There was information there to begin with. So I ask again: has anyone ever observed information being formed from an unintelligent source?

    Anonymous said...

    "That isn't information being formed from an unintelligent source. There was information there to begin with."

    Seems like an added constraint that wasn't implied by "information being formed from an unintelligent source", but hey.

    All right, to avoid wasting too much time on this, could you please provide a definition of information as you understand it?

    highboy said...

    You gotta be kidding me. LOL. Just answer the question anonymous. Its not an "added constraint", its plain English. Information being formed from an unintelligent source means a source without intelligence somehow formed information. Your example clearly didn't qualify. If you can't answer the question just say so. Here are all the known definitions http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/information

    So what I'm asking is if anyone ever observed an unintelligent source, which would be a source without information, somehow form information. Yes or no.

    Jon Woolf said...

    "So what I'm asking is if anyone ever observed an unintelligent source, which would be a source without information, somehow form information."

    Starlight. I think we can all agree stars aren't intelligent? Well, starlight contains information about the star it came from: surface temperature, composition, something of its size, and sometimes something about its distance.

    If that doesn't satisfy you, then consider animal tracks. The animal is not intelligent, yet its tracks contain information about it, which a skilled tracker can read like a book.

    radar said...

    Good grief. Stars and animal tracks are INFORMATION? Please, go get a dictionary. Data, yes, because an intelligent being (a human) makes observations about a star or a track. The star is not conversing with you.

    Go back and read what Kevin said for himself. You people have no idea what Kevin does and doesn't do or know if you don't read what he said for himself. Kevin nicely dismissed GA succinctly and without pretending his explanation would be too difficult for the audience to understand.

    Anonymous said...

    "Its not an "added constraint", its plain English. Information being formed from an unintelligent source means a source without intelligence somehow formed information. Your example clearly didn't qualify."

    Forming information doesn't preclude the possibility of having information there to begin with and adding to it.

    Take for example the NASA antenna designs. The final antenna design represents information that wasn't there at the beginning of the process and that wasn't designed by an intelligent designer. Instead, it is the direct result of a process of repeated trial and error, a model of natural selection.

    Cue creationists complaining that the model was run on a computer designed by intelligent beings etc., but that's really only focusing on the fact that it's a model, not what the simulation itself shows.

    Anonymous said...

    For an example of information being formed from unintelligent sources, see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U6QYDdgP9eg

    Start about 2:45 minutes in.

    Anonymous said...

    Radar,

    "Stars and animal tracks are INFORMATION?"

    Can be. Same for tree rings.

    "Please, go get a dictionary."

    A dictionary, gladly. Right, let's see:

    "knowledge gained through study, communication, research, instruction, etc.; factual data"

    or

    "knowledge acquired through experience or study"

    So a study of stars or animal tracks or tree rings can certainly yield information. Perhaps you missed the point of Jon's earlier post, which said, essentially, that one man's data is another man's information, so to speak.

    "Data, yes, because an intelligent being (a human) makes observations about a star or a track."

    Wrong. The observation (and presumably interpretation) of the data by an intelligent being is what makes them information.

    "The star is not conversing with you."

    Nor does it need to. You're imposing a rather self-serving definition here. Information doesn't necessitate conversation, though conversely a conversation includes information.

    Anonymous said...

    "Go back and read what Kevin said for himself."

    We'd like to, but Kevin's own words are something that you rather famously refused to share with us, remember?

    See right here: http://radaractive.blogspot.com/2011/02/you-have-audience-who-is-your-audience.html

    "You people have no idea what Kevin does and doesn't do or know if you don't read what he said for himself."

    Exactly. Now you've put your finger on the problem. We really have no idea what Kevin does or doesn't know. And if you want to cloak yourself in his credibility when it comes to GAs (something that you seem to have a real mental block about), you'll have to have him comment on the subject of GAs in his own words, not as edited or interpreted by you with your extreme biases.

    "Kevin nicely dismissed GA succinctly and without pretending his explanation would be too difficult for the audience to understand."

    All we know is that YOU dismissed GA succinctly and explained to us that Kevin agreed with you. Not very credible as it stands.

    Webscout said...

    "its plain English"

    Cute.

    Kris Andrews said...

    Hello Radaractive,
    I'm sorry to be rude, but this is one of the most misinformed, biased and funny attempts to rubbish the theory of evolution I have ever read.
    You have started with your own precepts "The bible is the very word of God so we can expect..." and tried to find 'evidence' that backs up your own theory.
    This is not the scientic process.
    I understand that these is no point in arguing with you as you already had your mind made up that you were correct before you even began your 'research'. It would take me a long time to respond to all the problems with your article, so I will pick only a few.
    1) Scientists can usually tell whether something is alive or dead but have failed to find some kind of material that constitutes life. There is no substance called "life.".
    You have answered your own question, there is no substance called life. Life is the name given to the sum of the chemical processes that go on within an organism. An organism is defined as living if it can do at least the following: metabolise, grow, replicate. We are no more than the sum of our parts, there is no magical extra called "Life" required. Just because you do not understand it does not mean that nobody else does.
    2) "On top of that no Darwinist has the slightest idea how life could have developed from non-life."
    What you mean here is "I have no idea how life developed from non-life". I have several ideas how it could have happened, you only need to refer to a biochemistry text book for several plausible explainations. Here you have fallen into the common fallacy of "If you can't give me an answer now then it must be the work of God" Some theories can never be proved conclusively simply because we cannot observe the event to know for sure what happened, but I find it a lot more likely that the events took place spontaneously rather than caused by some supernatural magical being.
    Consider the following:
    You consider humans too complicated to be made by chance alone. You therefore postulate that humans were created by God as something as complicated as a human could not happen by chance. You will also accept that God is more complicated than a human. So, by your own logic God could not come about by chance alone as he also is too complicated. So this leads us to the question of who created God? And who created this being that created God and so on into infinity.

    As one last point please consider the following:
    If by the chance of birth you were born to a Muslin, Seek or athist family, do you think you would now be the dedicated Christian that you are, or was it your upbringing that lead to your irrational beliefs?

    radar said...

    Kris Andrews - pure propaganda and claptrap all debunked here long ago.

    Kevin wrote his own answer and scohen can confirm that Kevin wrote it because he shared it with scohen. I posted it on this site.

    That man gets knowledge from observation doesn't mean that intelligence comes from the object, it comes from the man. You look at a rock and decide it is granitic. Did that rock pass information to you? Nonsense!

    radar said...

    Kris, you aren't rude, just brainwashed and not up to the level of the conversation. We have gone way past the boilerplate blather accepted by sixth graders in science.

    If life has no substance it is not material.

    If information has no substance it is not material.

    If thought has no substance it is not material.

    If materialists cannot account for a substance and a power at the singularity at the beginning of a big bang then they really have no idea of what they speak. Hawking gives gravity the credit but gravity doesn't exist without mass and a material world which is not yet created in this scenario.

    GA are produced by computer programs designed to produce them. Find me a computer growing on a tree with hardware, software and operating system humming away and then we'll talk.

    Kris Andrews said...

    As I expected, a personal attack rather than a refutation of any of my points.
    I will respect your right to beleive whatever you what, but you have to respect my belief that you are an idiot.
    I won't be returning as there is no intelligent conversation going on here.

    highboy said...

    "Forming information doesn't preclude the possibility of having information there to begin with and adding to it."

    The request was for information from a source with no information (intelligence), not information from information.

    "Cue creationists complaining that the model was run on a computer designed by intelligent beings etc., but that's really only focusing on the fact that it's a model, not what the simulation itself shows."

    The fact that the computer was designed by intelligent beings is a pretty relevant fact.

    Anonymous said...

    "Kevin wrote his own answer and scohen can confirm that Kevin wrote it because he shared it with scohen. I posted it on this site."

    On the subject of Hartnett, yes. On the subject of GAs, which is what we were discussing here, no. See the above link.

    If I'm missing something here and you are claiming that Kevin did comment on GAs in his own words, please provide the relevant link.

    highboy said...

    Kris says:

    "You have started with your own precepts "The bible is the very word of God so we can expect..." and tried to find 'evidence' that backs up your own theory."

    Actually that's completely false, which if you knew radar, you would already know his story on how he came to reject evolution and turn to God. Seems as though you've started with your own precept about radar.

    "We are no more than the sum of our parts, there is no magical extra called "Life" required"

    Prove this.

    "I have several ideas how it could have happened, you only need to refer to a biochemistry text book for several plausible explainations"

    You may have ideas but you've never tested them, never observed data as the results of those tests, and neither have any biochemists. So to refer to the explanations as "plausible" is not only jumping the gun but throwing the scientific process you were touting so highly straight out the window.

    "Some theories can never be proved conclusively simply because we cannot observe the event to know for sure what happened, but I find it a lot more likely that the events took place spontaneously rather than caused by some supernatural magical being."

    Bingo. Some theories can never be proven because you can't observe the "event" but interestingly enough that doesn't stop YOU from drawing all sorts of conclusions about the event now does it? You haven't observed it, in fact cannot possibly ever observe it, yet you "find it more likely..." Well that's fine, just so its clear that your theory of spontaneous formation of life has by your own admission about as much evidence going for it as the theory of a Creator.

    "As one last point please consider the following:
    If by the chance of birth you were born to a Muslin, Seek or athist family, do you think you would now be the dedicated Christian that you are, or was it your upbringing that lead to your irrational beliefs?"

    Ah, the Richard Dawkins childish rant of "you are only a Christian by chance..." funny the millions of people who grew up in Muslim, atheist, and even in cultures that practiced voodoo who became Christian don't seem to exist to guys like you. People have come to Christ because they have come to Christ. They all have their own story as to how this happened but they come from all sorts of upbringings, cultures.

    Anonymous said...

    "The request was for information from a source with no information (intelligence), not information from information."

    The request was for information formed from an unintelligent source, not a source with no information. Now you seem to equate information with intelligence (and not in the "Army intel" sense of the word), and they're not the same thing at all.

    Anonymous said...

    "Cue creationists complaining that the model was run on a computer designed by intelligent beings etc., but that's really only focusing on the fact that it's a model, not what the simulation itself shows."

    "The fact that the computer was designed by intelligent beings is a pretty relevant fact."

    Ask and ye shall receive...

    So you've decided to focus on the fact that it's a model, not what the simulation itself shows.

    Anonymous said...

    "We are no more than the sum of our parts, there is no magical extra called "Life" required"

    "Prove this."

    How could one prove the negative of this? The onus is on proving the positive, i.e. that a magical extra called "life" IS required.

    radar said...

    Kris, you began your barrage of propaganda with a personal attack and then followed up with a long list of refuted points. Not sure why you suppposed that was adding to the conversation, but I am always glad to be considered an idiot by a Darwinist, it means I am on the right track. Anyone who clings tightly to 19th Century hypotheses that have been ripped to shreds by 21st Century discoveries is simply either foolish or brainwashed or so atheopathic that they would prefer a complete humbug to what a logical person would conclude from what we now know:

    1) Organisms are highly complex and obviously designed with irreducibly complex systems and structures that are interdependent. They are hardware, software and operating systems with redundancies and contingencies. They are designed to be able to speciate which they do easily, but they are also designed to remain the same kind. Speciation and conservation of kind is all that man observes.

    2) Darwinists are unscientific in the extreme in denying the Law of Biogenesis and the Laws of Thermodynamics. They claim to have excuses to do this but their only excuses are based on philosophical not scientific reasons.

    3) Those who are too brainwashed to discuss these issues don't discuss, they just play hit and run with boilerplate phrases. Trolls are allowed but if they run away they are not missed.

    Anonymous said...

    "If life has no substance it is not material.

    If information has no substance it is not material.

    If thought has no substance it is not material."

    By "material" do you mean "explicable from a materialistic/naturalistic viewpoint"? If that's what you mean, then you are completely wrong.

    Life is a series of interdependent chemical, material processes with certain characteristics.

    Information and thought are conceptual, but are tied to a material basis. Destroy their containers, and the information and/or thoughts are gone and forever lost.

    You may like to believe otherwise, but there is no evidence for such a belief.

    Anonymous said...

    "Darwinists are unscientific in the extreme in denying the Law of Biogenesis and the Laws of Thermodynamics. They claim to have excuses to do this but their only excuses are based on philosophical not scientific reasons."

    These complaints have been refuted many times, including on this blog.

    You seem to disagree, so...

    Please explain how you think reproduction with variation is in violation of the LOT.

    Please explain how the LOB proves that it is impossible for reproduction and reproduction with variation to start at a molecular level.

    Anonymous said...

    "You may have ideas but you've never tested them, never observed data as the results of those tests, and neither have any biochemists."

    You should check into that a little more before making such claims.

    Anonymous said...

    "GA are produced by computer programs designed to produce them. Find me a computer growing on a tree with hardware, software and operating system humming away and then we'll talk."

    A sad reply from an IT salesman - IT in this case referring to Information Technology, not Information Theory.

    I see this has been discussed on your blog before, and the answer was already given to you - you are making the simple and obvious mistake of confusing the algorithm and the output.

    Question for you - was the output (e.g. the NASA antenna) intelligently designed or not? If you think it was intelligently designed, then what (or who) was the intelligence that designed it?

    radar said...

    Highboy makes a great point - my missionary contacts tell me there are more Christians behind the Bamboo Curtain in Red China than are found in the USA!

    There are lots of Christians in Islamic countries, endangering their lives to live a faith that brings a death sentence with it. Like the first Christians in the first century AD, Asian and African and Middle East Christians face persecution, theft, beatings and even death.

    Richard Dawkins does us a great service by actually speaking his mind. That means he reveals many subtle Darwinist flaws but he is honest enough to give his opinion. He has no idea where information comes from and he admits that no macroevolution appears to be happening today. Yet he clings to that belief system.

    No, where you are born doesn't determine your faith. I was a dedicated non-Christian party animal well-indoctrinated in Darwinist propaganda and a fossil collector and someone who had devoted many months scouring fossil formations for the good stuff. As Spike Psarris says, he came into the aerospace program as a Darwinist and an atheist and he is now a Creationist and a Christian. I began my journey through life as an agnostic and a Darwinist who became both a Christian and a Creationist. I became a Christian by faith. I became a Creationist by evidence.

    radar said...

    I work in the IT industry and I did work in the military intelligence field and had a top secret clearance. Big whup, but the fact is that information does not exist without intelligent sources.

    Go to the Ultimate Information post at the top of my links list and see the long discussions about this. Each post within that document has active comment threads so no censorship. But you can read every comment ever made and NEVER find any commenter who can give us a natural source of information.

    Please give up on GA. Don't you realize how silly it is to credit a computer program designed by intelligence running on a computer hardware and software set designed by humans and then give credit to the output as being a natural source? Really? That is ridiculous.

    Anonymous said...

    "That man gets knowledge from observation doesn't mean that intelligence comes from the object, it comes from the man."

    Wasn't it "information" we were talking about, not "intelligence"?

    "You look at a rock and decide it is granitic. Did that rock pass information to you? Nonsense!"

    The rock represents data, which can also be information if it serves a useful purpose to its recipient, who can be intelligent or not, as previously discussed.

    Anonymous said...

    "Go to the Ultimate Information post at the top of my links list and see the long discussions about this. Each post within that document has active comment threads so no censorship."

    Wow, the chutzpah (and apparently latent guilt...) of you bringing up that post. For any readers stumbling on this blog for the first time, this post represents the one time that Radar did indulge in blatant censorship on this blog. It was a normal post on this very blog, with ongoing discussion, and then Radar DELETED it along with all the opposing comments and posted it elsewhere (at the above link) MINUS the opposing comments and with COMMENTS SWITCHED OFF.

    When challenged on this, he justified his hypocritical action (since he so often complains about perceived censorship when it suits him), he said something about just once wanting to have the last word. Can't find the exact link now.

    "But you can read every comment ever made and NEVER find any commenter who can give us a natural source of information."

    Nonsense, the answer has been given to you over and over, you just refuse to accept it.

    Anonymous said...

    "Please give up on GA. Don't you realize how silly it is to credit a computer program designed by intelligence running on a computer hardware and software set designed by humans and then give credit to the output as being a natural source? Really? That is ridiculous."

    Question for you - was the output (e.g. the NASA antenna) intelligently designed or not? If you think it was intelligently designed, then what (or who) was the intelligence that designed it?

    Here's your chance to prove you understand something about information. Was the output intelligently designed?

    Don't deflect to the algorithm or the hardware. Focus.

    Was the output intelligently designed?

    If so, what (or who) was the intelligence that designed it?

    radar said...

    "Please give up on GA. Don't you realize how silly it is to credit a computer program designed by intelligence running on a computer hardware and software set designed by humans and then give credit to the output as being a natural source? Really? That is ridiculous."

    Question for you - was the output (e.g. the NASA antenna) intelligently designed or not? If you think it was intelligently designed, then what (or who) was the intelligence that designed it?

    Here's your chance to prove you understand something about information. Was the output intelligently designed?

    Don't deflect to the algorithm or the hardware. Focus.

    Was the output intelligently designed?

    If so, what (or who) was the intelligence that designed it?


    Lame. The hardware and software and operating system and algorithm were all designed to create random outputs that were compared to optimal performance criteria. GA is just a way of shortcutting trial and error by humans. Think of Thomas Alva Edison trying a thousand different methods of coming up with a workable light bulb before finally hitting on a good one. This is what GA does, it is a program written to do the trial and error that humans would normally do on their own.

    Now, if you get GA being performed by a piece of quartz or a solution of hydrochloric acid, then go ahead and tell me you found a material source for information. GA does not qualify and it is sad to see to what lengths you will go to pretend that it does.

    Anonymous said...

    Can't answer the question?

    Anonymous said...

    "The hardware and software and operating system and algorithm were all designed to create random outputs"

    - to mimic reproduction with variation, yes.

    "that were compared to optimal performance criteria."

    - to mimic survival "tests" or fitness, yes.

    Good, so you understand some of the components.

    "GA is just a way of shortcutting trial and error by humans."

    If humans sat around all day and tried completely nonsensical things without wondering if it's a good idea, then maybe.

    GAs mimic mutation plus natural selection, and are surprisingly effective. The NASA engineers acknowledged that the final antenna design was not something they ever would have come up with using "intelligent design" methods.

    radar said...

    Natural selection is a process designed into cells. GA mimic trial and error and seek to generate optimal patterns by producing far more random trials than humans can generate in a short time.

    You try to stick GA into places it doesn't belong. It is not in any way a natural source of information nor does it prove Darwinism. It is just another sideshow in which Darwinists try to muddy the waters by confusing formal programming with *poof* magical appearances in nature of information and design.

    If you want to observe something happening in nature, go to nature and find it happening. You'll not do it trying to use computer programs.

    highboy said...

    "Can't answer the question?"

    Nonsense. He answered your question. GA ultimately come from hardware that is DESIGNED to produce such things, giving it a material source. This is pretty much irrefutable. I have to agree with radar that its pretty much ridiculous to point to output from such a complex DESIGNED system that was designed specifically for that purpose in this discussion.

    "Information and thought are conceptual, but are tied to a material basis. Destroy their containers, and the information and/or thoughts are gone and forever lost."

    So without the man made hardware, there is no "output". Thanks.

    Anonymous said...

    @highboy:

    So what exactly is your position in the creation/evolution debate? I seem to recall that you once said that the whole issue was not terribly important to you. Yet here you always seem to take Radar's side.

    So are you a creationist or not?

    highboy said...

    "So what exactly is your position in the creation/evolution debate? I seem to recall that you once said that the whole issue was not terribly important to you. Yet here you always seem to take Radar's side.

    So are you a creationist or not?"

    I never said evolution vs. creation wasn't terribly important, I said the age of the earth isn't terribly important. As a Christian I'm obviously a creationist. I believe the earth was created. That's pretty much a given. As to how old it is I'm not so sure. The topic of this current debate however is about information, and whether or not it can come naturally or from an intelligent designer.

    Anonymous said...

    "As a Christian I'm obviously a creationist."

    Well, I guess many Christians would disagree with you on that being 'obvious'

    Anyway, considering the age of the Earth: Radar seems to think that it's Biblically correct to believe in a Young Earth. You don't seem to think so.
    How come that two Christians can think differently on what the Bible says? Radar is pretty sure about it; why aren't you?

    highboy said...

    "Well, I guess many Christians would disagree with you on that being 'obvious'"

    You're claiming that many Christians would disagree with me that God created the universe? Interesting. Exactly what are you basing this on?

    "Anyway, considering the age of the Earth: Radar seems to think that it's Biblically correct to believe in a Young Earth. You don't seem to think so."

    I never said its not Biblically correct to believe in a Young Earth, I simply said I'm not sure. The "day-age" theory actually has some merit to it in my view, though not enough to sway me one way or the other.

    "How come that two Christians can think differently on what the Bible says?"

    Well for one, we are two different people with two different brains, but more to your point, we don't think differently about what it says. The Bible says the earth was created in 7 days. Neither of us disputes that. Its a question as to what constitutes "day" in the Bible. Radar feels strongly its a literal 24 hour day, I'm not so sure, which isn't the same as saying radar is wrong.

    "Radar is pretty sure about it; why aren't you?"

    See above. I've listened to plausible arguments from all sides concerning the age of the earth. Not sure why this is such a big deal but in any event, I don't disagree with radar at all about the topic at hand, where information comes from, and that the idea that I have an ape like ancestor is total b.s. The only point that I've never been able to fully ascribe to one way or the other is the age of the earth.

    So if we're done with all of that....

    Anonymous said...

    "Natural selection is a process designed into cells."

    An easy claim to make. The evidence for this is what exactly?

    "GA mimic trial and error and seek to generate optimal patterns by producing far more random trials than humans can generate in a short time."

    So a process of random trials subjected to a fitness test can generate information. Okay then.

    "You try to stick GA into places it doesn't belong."

    Antenna design? The proof is in the pudding.

    "It is not in any way a natural source of information"

    It is a model of a natural source of information. Why is that so hard to understand?

    "nor does it prove Darwinism."

    Nobody claimed it "proves Darwinism". I suspect it's that fear, this exact point, that drives your complete paranoia and denial on this subject.

    "It is just another sideshow in which Darwinists try to muddy the waters by confusing formal programming with *poof* magical appearances in nature of information and design."

    You're the one that's confused - the formal programming in this case only deals with modeling the world.

    Your obsession with "*poof*" and "magic" may be related to the fact that the only one posing those exact concepts are the creationists. That's exactly what creationism claims, that everything was magically poofed into existence by a supernatural being.

    "If you want to observe something happening in nature, go to nature and find it happening. You'll not do it trying to use computer programs."

    Wow. A little short-sighted, don't you think?

    So should we just go outside and watch our house flattened by a hurricane - or should we get ample warning of Hurricane Irene approaching (thanks to computer simulations) so we can evacuate?

    Anonymous said...

    "You're claiming that many Christians would disagree with me that God created the universe? Interesting. Exactly what are you basing this on?"

    No I'm not claiming that. When you used the term 'creationist' I assumed that you meant 'creationist' as in 'God having created all species separately'. Sorry for the misunderstanding.

    However, if God can create the universe, why can't he have created the evolutionary process? There's nothing about the Theory of Evolution that would stop you from believing that - like many, many Christians do, by the way.

    Kris Andrews said...

    Hello Radar,
    Sorry for my earlier outburst, I didn't come here to troll, but I have never seen a creationist refute the logic of evolution, so wanted to know what you would say.
    I disagree that my comments are boilerplate, as a person with a degree in biochemistry and genetics I would say I have some experience to base my opinions on.
    I admit I was wrong to assume you had been brought up as Christian, however you would have to admit that most religious people are the same religion as their parents, so it would seem to confirm the hypothesis that their beliefs are due to their parents.
    I myself counted myself as Christian during my formative years, but found religion to be incompatible with the facts.
    Your comment about biochemists having never tested their theories about the first living molecules was not correct, many experiments have been done trying various conditions that could have been found on the early earth, some with very promising results. I agree that you should look into it a bit more before dismissing it out of hand.
    I would be interested to hear what you think is an irreducibly complex structure, as I have never seen an example that holds up to close scrutiny.
    Anyway, I apologise again for calling you an idiot, I was quoting a greater mind than my own! I just believe you have not seen all the evidence or have a bias so that you dismiss the evidence that does not fit your hypothesis.
    However I do commend you not removing comments with an opposing view point, but it would be good to see some real reasoned arguments.

    radar said...

    Kris,

    I am used to being called names and I am a first amendment guy anyway. My assertion is that biochemists have tried many experiments in an attempt to find a means by which the building blocks of life can assemble in the wild and all attempts have proved to be failures. Chemical compounds catalyze before they can get to where they need to be as a part of the DNA string, there is the problem of chirality, and besides that we have the issue of the DNA string being a very complex coding system holding information.

    Also, one needs the cell to have the ATP synthase engine going in order to power the DNA transcription process. In fact the workings of the cell are a remarkable interactive series of events that make a human factory look like a set of tinkertoys. The sheer complexity of the operation of just one cell in the human body is amazing. So I find myself wondering why a scientist could imagine such a thing self-assembling from parts that cannot even exist on their own in nature or should I say cannot assemble themselves.

    If you are both a biochemist and a geneticist then you know that a formaldehyde problem exists in nature that blocks the assembly of the required raw materials. You know that in fact many hard stops on the chemical side stand between non-living raw materials and the assembly of sugars and proteins.

    You also know that the DNA string folds and refolds many times using the once-called "junk" DNA as the chief executor of these operations. The four-letter DNA code is far richer than the binary code we humans use in computing. The DNA string is a repository that holds information beyond any one library on earth within a tiny space. It interacts within the cell with RNA and meta-information in a mouse cell is different than the meta-information in a human cell so that mice make mice and men make men.

    Let's go a step farther. What is astonishing is that the DNA composition of an earthworm and a man is very similar. They are around the same size and composed of the same elements but they produce very different organisms. The old Darwinist ideas of DNA revealing places where mutations and new traits are developed is being shattered because similar systems in one organism often come from different places on the DNA string and differing portions of the embryos will produce similar things. Birds and bats do not build their wings in the same ways. What becomes a gill in a fish is part of three or four different structures in a man.

    I think Behe did a great job of holding up some irreducibly complex systems to scrutiny. Every attempt to explain away the e. coli flagellum system by proposing that much simpler systems mutatated to become this one miss the point that the jump in component parts would be massive to the point of miraculous.

    radar said...

    Another thing might be just the ATP Synthase motor. It must be in the cell to exist. It must be coded by DNA to be built. It requires ATP to be built and it produces the power to run the cell that holds the DNA. This goes well beyond chicken and egg.

    How about the kinesin "walking heads" that I illustrated recently? This process is remarkably interesting and defies a simple explanation for how it came to be other than by design.

    Reproduction as studied by Kirschner and Gerhart showed us that the mother lays the framework for the child and that there are pre-existing switches in place to allow for rapid speciation rather than speciation being driven by mutation. In fact speciation is a feature of the design of the cell.

    K & G listed several "jumps" that life would have had to take to develop all the variety found now and had no answers for how they could happen. In fact their work showed the lack of evidence for mutation-driven change from one kind of organism to another.

    Biochemically, whether prokaryote or Eukaryote, organisms are similar. All living things are built of much the same stuff, with the same kind of coding mechanisms and all have redundancies and contingencies built in to conserve the kind. This speaks to design and a common design source at that.

    It is interesting that we find organisms that seem to be exactly the same as those found in the fossil record and many of them "appear" and then disappear in fossils but then turn up again alive and well. At the same time, we see rapid speciation of living organisms now taking place, so that we can understand how some organisms have changed drastically and yet remained the same kind.

    I see evidence for design and design that is beyond human capabilities. We have engineers working day and night copying the design of creatures. I see no evidence at all for Darwinism.

    radar said...

    Kris,

    I have been blogging for years, laying down various points one by one concerning the evidences for a created world versus one that just happened to happen. If you use the in-blog search tool you can look back at posts I have made on history, artifacts, genetics, chemistry, dating methods, various sedimentary layer anomalies that falsify uniformitarianism and so on and so forth. I didn't begin blogging yesterday.

    Many points that are discussed have been made over and over. Commenters have given me the best they have on information, for instance, and have come woefully short of ever hitting the mark. Just on that subject alone Darwinism takes a tailspin down to oblivion. The organisms of the world are packed full of massive amounts of very specific information and there is no natural source that produces information.

    Anonymous said...

    "Commenters have given me the best they have on information, for instance, and have come woefully short of ever hitting the mark."

    Now now Radar, tell the whole story. They didn't come short, they came awfully close. So close actually you had to stoop to censorship and remove a whole article to a private blog just so you could get the last word in.

    Jon Woolf said...

    Kris,

    However I do commend you not removing comments with an opposing view point, but it would be good to see some real reasoned arguments.

    I hope you're not holding your breath. I've been hanging around here for well over a year, and I haven't seen Radar offer a real, well-reasoned argument yet. A lot of logical fallacies, a lot of articles quoted whole-cloth from Creation.com and other pseudoscience websites, but no real evidence.

    Anonymous said...

    "How about the kinesin "walking heads" that I illustrated recently? This process is remarkably interesting and defies a simple explanation for how it came to be other than by design."

    Perfect example of an argument from incredulity. No "simple explanation" comes to my mind, therefore it must have been designed by God.

    And why exactly do you dismiss the possibility of a complex explanation?

    Your blog is littered with such fallacies.

    Kris Andrews said...

    Hi Radar,
    I think you would be surprised about the results of experiments, I wouldn't call the spontaneous assembly of amino acids a failure.
    I admit that the preference for living systems for one type of chiral molecule over the other is strange, and no I can't explain it completely, but that does not mean it was designed.
    You do seem a bit hung up on 'information'. If you will accept for a moment for the purposes of my point that the world is vastly old, and that for a long time there was no life, now it may be true that the assembly of a self replicatng molecule (maybe a RNA strand that catalyses the assembly of more RNA) was a very unlikely event, but it is an event that only had to happen once. This string of RNA would then catalyse the assembly of more, some of which would catalyst the same reation and so on, natural selection would then begin based on the fitness of these self replicators to their environment. Does that mean that the RNA contains information, I certainly wouldn't call it that.

    I beleive you are making a mistake looking at the final product and pronouncing it impossible by incremental improvements. If you took a jumbo jet or an ipad back to about 1000 AD I'm sure they would also find it irreducibly complex. You need to look at the series of steps that could lead to the final product, and saying that there are none simply means that you do not have the knowledge or immagination to think of them, not that they do not exist.

    I'm not going to argue over the chemical processes, as it has been a few years since I last studied and I would only make mistakes.

    As you do seem to be very passionate about this topic I have a few books you might be interested in:

    From probably your least favourite author, Richard Dawkins (a world renouned scientist, who happens to be an atheist also, but that does not change the logic of his books):
    The Blind Watchmaker
    Climbing Mount Improbable
    The God Delusion

    Also Life Ascending by Nick Lane.

    They can argue the points much more clearly than I can.

    I would also say that you should choose your sources carefully, getting papers from some foundation that spends it's time trying to prove creation does not a balanced argument make.

    And one last point before I have to do some real work, the absence of a belief system is not a belief system, scientists do not a have a 'science religion', that are not out to get you or your fellow believers, they are there to uncover the truth only.