Friday, December 03, 2010

Evolution Undermined - Again


[the arsenic lake bacteria from California]

According to evolutionists, the evolutionary view of a single (and very ancient) origin of life is supported at the deepest level imaginable: the very nature of the DNA code in which the instructions of genes and chromosomes are written. In all living organisms, the instructions for reproducing and operating the individual is encoded in a chemical language with four letters -- A, C, T, and G, the initials of four chemicals. Combinations of three of these letters specify each of the amino acids that the cell uses in building proteins.

Biologically and chemically, there is no reason why this particular genetic code, rather than any of millions or billions of others, should exist, scientists assert. Yet every species on Earth carries a genetic code that is, for all intents and purposes, identical and universal. The only scientific explanation for this situation is that the genetic code was the result of a single historic accident. That is, this code was the one carried by the single ancestor of life and all of its descendants, including us.

Well, now we know that this isn't completely true. Certain bacteria have a different type of DNA using arsenic instead of phosphorus to connect the amino acids.

So while scientists are still holding on to the "DNA proves one universal common ancestor" claim, that idea is starting to look more shaky. There has now been discovered another significantly different type of DNA.

Of course, the entire argument to begin with is false in any case: "The only scientific explanation for this situation is that the genetic code was the result of a single historic accident." No accident created the enormous complexity and purposefulness of DNA, any more than monkeys typing at random could write Shakespeare. Actually, the only explanation for this situation is that the genetic code was the result of an act of divine creation.

34 comments:

NC said...

As I have suggested in the past, you seem to be making earthshaking claims that undermine the whole basis of existing scientific theories. Why don't you submit these ideas to a REAL scientific forum for review?

Of course you won't because you aren't really talking about science or scientific reasoning. Because by definition, science assumes nature and natural laws, which are supposed to work in a constant way. If you put god or miracles in the equation, science cannot work because there is no consistency. The whole method could not possibly work if one allows for "miracles".

jewish philosopher said...

"Of course you won't because you aren't really talking about science or scientific reasoning. Because by definition, science assumes nature and natural laws, which are supposed to work in a constant way. If you put god or miracles in the equation, science cannot work because there is no consistency. The whole method could not possibly work if one allows for "miracles"."

No, not exactly. You are making the common error of confusing science (which means gaining knowledge through exact,repeatable laboratory experiments) and atheism (which is a religion which preaches that the Biblical God does not exist and evolution created us).

The fact is that prior to 1859 and the theory of evolution, all scientists were creationists and intelligent design believers yet still did plenty of good science as history demonstrates.

The confusion arises because according to atheism prophesy cannot exist and therefore clergymen are unimportant, making scientists society's most important intellectuals. Many scientists have therefore enthusiastically promoted atheism while many young atheists have chosen a career in science. (The 1860 Oxford evolution debate and the 1925 Scopes Trial have become the legendary symbols of scientists triumphing over clergymen.)

In any case, I would have no problem sending my findings to creationist scientists, for example the people at the Discovery Institute. I even have a few times. However sending them to atheistic scientists would obviously be as pointless as Richard Dawkins mailing his atheistic writings to the Vatican.

This video illustrates the fate of scientists challenging the current atheistic orthodoxy.

http://www.youtube.com/v/cEvq4xIHmH4

Baal Habos said...

While I don't fully understand the ramifications of this, my first thought was that a different biological underpinning to life would actually be a step away from God, so I was perplexed at your post. And then I came across the tidbit below that this had actually been predicted by the scientific orthodoxy. So your interpretation is bogus.



"At a conference at Arizona State about alien life in 2006, however, Dr. Wolfe-Simon suggested that an organism that could cope with arsenic might actually have incorporated arsenic instead of phosphorus into its lifestyle. In a subsequent paper in The International Journal of Astrobiology, she and Ariel Anbar and Paul Davies, both of Arizona State University, predicted the existence of arsenic-loving life forms.
“Then Felisa found them!” said Dr. Davies, who has long championed the idea of searching for “weird life” on Earth as well as in space and is a co-author on the new paper.

jewish philosopher said...

"Yet every species on Earth carries a genetic code that is, for all intents and purposes, identical and universal. The only scientific explanation for this situation is that the genetic code was the result of a single historic accident. That is, this code was the one carried by the single ancestor of life and all of its descendants, including us."

As I point out, this is one of the so called "proofs" of evolution and a non-DNA life form would demolish that.

Of course, that's irrelevant to believers. Evolution is fantasy based not fact based.

NC said...

"The confusion arises because according to atheism prophesy cannot exist "

Prophesy would contradict known science, not specifically atheism. It would mean that physical laws are not consistent across time and space (because god is intervening/disrupting in the natural course of events, and because a living organism cannot perceive that which does not yet exist). Therefore if prophecy were true we could not rely on our scientific models for anything.

"science (which means gaining knowledge through exact,repeatable laboratory experiments) "

Your definition of science is incorrect and narrow.

Anonymous said...

How did this bacteria evovle the ability to use arsenic? How did it survive in an arsenic environment before it had these adaptations? So it had to be living in an arsenic free environment. But then why would it evolve the ability to ise arsenic if it doesn't need to?

jewish philosopher said...

"It would mean that physical laws are not consistent across time and space"

Which may be true.

http://www.nytimes.com/2001/08/15/us/anything-can-change-it-seems-even-an-immutable-law-of-nature.html

"Your definition of science is incorrect and narrow."

I think it's pretty good. Calling subjects like psychology, anthropology, economics, archeology and paleontology "science" lumps them together with physics and chemistry and gives them a prestige they don't deserve. They should be called "humanities" and "antiquities". History and literature after all are not "science". 

NC said...

All of the above use the same scientific method. Get over it.

jewish philosopher said...

All the above have been filled with fraud because without repeatable exact experiments you can't check anything. Other than economics, there are no Nobel prizes in those fields.

NC said...

I'm impressed with your investigative and intellectual powers that have revealed that paleontology, anthropology, and psychology are all frauds. These revelations would be worthy of a Pulitzer prize winning article in the NY Times or Washington Post. Or perhaps a Wikileaks release.

I can imagine the headline:

FIELD OF PSYCHOLOGY DISCOVERED TO BE A HOAX!

Honestly, I think you're a little out of your league.

And BTW what about biology (really a subset of chemistry) and cosmology (a branch of physics)? Hoaxes?

jewish philosopher said...

I'm sure you're aware that science has it's share of frauds, just as much as business or politics

http://www.museumofhoaxes.com/hoax/archive/display/category/scientific_fraud/

And I believe that the majority are in the soft sciences, which should just not be called science in my opinion.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hard_and_soft_science

Giving a Nobel for economics has been controversial.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nobel_Memorial_Prize_in_Economic_Sciences#Controversies_and_criticisms

NC said...

"I'm sure you're aware that science has it's share of frauds, just as much as business or politics"

As does any human endeavor, including religion.

jewish philosopher said...

Well, I'm not calling religion "science" even though some try that also - Scientology, the church of Jesus Christ scientist, for example.

Joseph said...

I thought the scientists bred the bacteria to tolerate arsenic. It's the same kind of life (although you can think of this as an example of intelligent design).

Anonymous said...

The simple test of god's existence is some form of supernatural maifestation or event.
Let god announce his presence to all humanity by announcing that for the next 8 days he intends to suspend all the laws of nature by preventing the sun from setting. Now a miracle like that repeated for 8 days would establish his presence beyond doubt.
Of course that won't happen because a non existent god can't breach the laws of nature.
So, entertain your delusions while I munch on my McSandwich and thick shake. Its a lot more satisfying than than embracing stupid beliefs.

jewish philosopher said...

Let the CEO of my company come and tell me personally that I'll get fired for showing up an hour late each day. Then I'll believe it.

In the meantime, I will continue getting up whenever I want to and I'll let everyone else suffer with their stupid, baseless beliefs.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 6:18

But the universe itself breached the laws of nature by popping into existance. And it breached the laws of probability by making itself able to accomodate life. And life breached the laws of nature by coming into existance all by itself. And it keeps on breaching the laws of probability by developing imporbabale adaptations.

Anonymous said...

What a dopey comparison. Did it take 15 years of talmudic logic to render that assesment?
Its a given that anyone showing up an hour late will be fired just as surely as no miraculous commandeering of the sun will or has occured. That's why 99.9999999999% of working people don't deliberately oversleep and do arrive on their jobs on time. There is a definite cause and effect. You come to work late and you'll be fired. I'd ask you to confirm the propsition, but your work history retards your ability to get hired anywhere, let alone get fired.
OTOH, there is no given that god exists, except in the fantasy world of believers.
That's why tests like demanding god to interrupt the laws of nature would be a true measurement that would prove his existence beyond a shadow of a doubt.
Its day one. I'll get my tefilin out of my attic and put them on every day for the next 8. If the sun doesn't set, I'll be the first atheist to worship your god. However, if the sun continues in its course, I'll burn them. It was just taking up valuable space anyway.
Hmmmm... let me get that lighter fluid ready.
I'll check in with you in the next 8 days. Please don't let god disapoint me.

NC said...

A little political correctness:

Despite my skepticism, I don't consider JP's core orthodox beliefs stupid and baseless (maybe some specific comments are). Every person has a belief system and eyeglasses through which he looks at the world, despite the fact that he hasn't personally verified every one of these beliefs. I accept that NASA flew to the moon and that the US dropped the a-bomb on Japan, even though I didn't personally verify it.

I choose to believe certain sources-- news, scientists, etc, and, at a knwoledge level, there is a certain "leap of faith" that allows me to manage my life and accept certain facts and ideas based on those sources.

Religious belief is not the same as faith in other sources, and I am not justifying JP's beliefs, I am just saying that at a human level a rational person can believe what he believes because of the way that all humans acquire knowledge. A billion Muslims believe in Islam and we don't say their all stupid and baseless.

Having said that, I would second Anon's motion that god take up the challenge and give us an unequivocal sign. Supposedly he did it with the ancients, why not now?

On the subject of the post-- the argument from design, or watchmaker analogy, has been so thoroughly refuted it isn't worth it getting into a debate again. There are many excellent short YouTube videos on the subject.

jewish philosopher said...

The watchmaker analogy could be refuted by presenting one example of a machine which we have witnessed come into existence spontaneously, without any intelligent designer.

I missed that Youtube, I guess.

God doesn't speak to people who are not interested in listening to Him, therefore prophesy has always been rare, even in ancient times.

The truth of Judaism however is as clear as the truth of any premodern event, as I have explained at length.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2006/12/truth-of-judaism.html

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2009/07/is-history-bunk.html

Anonymous said...

NC said...
"A little political correctness:

Despite my skepticism, I don't consider JP's core orthodox beliefs stupid and baseless (maybe some specific comments are). Every person has a belief system and eyeglasses through which he looks at the world, despite the fact that he hasn't personally verified every one of these beliefs. I accept that NASA flew to the moon and that the US dropped the a-bomb on Japan, even though I didn't personally verify it."

When the prism of authentication is a sophistic and fallacious evidentary process, then JP's beliefs are indeed reduced to stupid and baseless. For instance new beliefs manifesting themselves in myriad new chumras, rituals etc. such as kosher water, kosher shaytels, kosher vegetables ec.
Your affidavit for truth is the application of recognized scientific and historical tests using such determinative processes as independent corroboration and falsifiability. JP's dopey apologetic retort is: how do we really know that Alexander the Great or George Washington realy existed? That sort of beguiling argumentation leads to the sophistic inference that god must exist and of course, he has ordained that you drink kosher water or else satan's buring coals await you.

"Religious belief is not the same as faith in other sources, and I am not justifying JP's beliefs, I am just saying that at a human level a rational person can believe what he believes because of the way that all humans acquire knowledge. A billion Muslims believe in Islam and we don't say their all stupid and baseless."

And does the aquisition of that knowledge make that knowledge any less deslusory?
Fundamentalist islamists indocrinate themselves in medrasas that their "truth" is infallible and chareidim engage in similar abberational pursuiits. Are their knowledge any less corrupt?
I disagree. Their beliefs are stupid and baseless. Is just a matter of degree and the ability to implement their unbalanced designs on the rest of us.

NC said...

"he watchmaker analogy could be refuted by presenting one example of a machine which we have witnessed come into existence spontaneously, without any intelligent designer."

A rock.

GodAwful said...

jewish philosopher said...
"God doesn't speak to people who are not interested in listening to Him, therefore prophesy has always been rare, even in ancient times."

Surely there must be a few good, holy chareidim that are interested in god, who wish to assert god's munificence on this planet. So let them bend his ear and have him deliver a few biblical plagues upon the citizens of an evil U.S. city... say, Las Vegas or the sinners in Monsey N.Y. (you sinners in Monsey, you know who you are). A complete 24 hours of total darkness or the death of every first born would to the trick. We need to know that god is out there !

jewish philosopher said...

"Their beliefs are stupid and baseless."

You mean like evolution?

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2008/03/evolution-science-hijacked-by-atheism.html

"A rock."

machine: an assemblage of parts that transmit forces, motion, and energy one to another in a predetermined manner

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/machine?show=0&t=1291753722

" We need to know that god is out there !"

Sure, and then the minute that happens you'll turn around and claim that this proves there is no God. Take the Holocaust for example.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2009/06/holocaust-clear-evidence-of-gods-hand.html

Mr. Cohen said...

"Yet every species on Earth carries a genetic code that is, for all intents and purposes, identical and universal."

Because every species on Earth was created by the same G_d.

NC said...

""A rock."

machine: an assemblage of parts that transmit forces, motion, and energy one to another in a predetermined manner"

A rock is complex.

A machine is a priori man made object because we make them. A spoon would fall into the same category. "predetermined"

Organic matter, living or non-living, is complex but not a machine. What "purpose" does a arsenic containing bacterium have? None. It just is.

So your requirement for rebuttal is meaningless.

Like it or not, you are just a bag of chemicals, like flowers or cockroaches. Maybe not emotionally satisfying, but true nonetheless.

jewish philosopher said...

The key indicator of intelligent design is purposefulness. Something which is purposeful must have been created by an intelligent designer.

For example, a complex mechanism with many parts all working efficiently for a certain purpose, like the human heart for example, must have been created by an intelligent designer.

By the same token, narrow-band signals, say those that are only a few Hertz or less wide, are the mark of a purposely built transmitter and would indicate an extraterrestrial intelligence.

http://www.seti.org/Page.aspx?pid=558#a3

Unlikely events, happening over and over and all accomplishing a certain purpose, would indicate intelligent design, for example someone repeatedly winning a lottery.

Darwinian evolution is a pathetic attempt to escape this obvious fact, by claiming that the vast length of geological time and the vast expanse of space make anything possible, however as I have explained probablity and paleontology have refuted Darwin.

http://jewishphilosopher.blogspot.com/2008/03/evolution-science-hijacked-by-atheism.html

NC said...

I would accept a scientific argument from an authority in the fields of paleontology and probability refuting evolution, not from you.

jewish philosopher said...

I prefer to rely on facts not authority.

Louis Agassiz was an anti-Darwinist paleontologist.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Louis_Agassiz

http://www.wwnorton.com/college/history/archive/resources/documents/ch21_04.htm

Lee Spetner is a creationist physicist, with an extensive knowledge of math.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lee_Spetner

http://www.amazon.com/Not-Chance-Shattering-Modern-Evolution/dp/1880582244

Anonymous said...

NC:

Organisms transmit energy just like machines do, for the purpose of staying alive and reproducing.

How is a rock complex?

NC said...

"How is a rock complex?"

At the chemical level, its molecular, atomic and subatomic structure it is extremely complex. Millions of subatomic particles and forces, interactive in a complex way to hold the rock together.

More complex than a watch.

Anonymous said...

How is it complex? It is just a bunch of molecules? If you define complexity as there being a lot of stuff, you are right. But if you are defining complexity as having a lotof different parts and stuff, then it isn't as comlex as an organism.

And since a watch is made of atoms and molecules as well, it is just as complex as a rock.

Avi Bitterman said...

"Certain bacteria have a different type of DNA using arsenic instead of phosphorus to connect the amino acids."

The bacteria were not naturally found with arseno-diester bonds. They were naturally found with phospho-diester bonds just like everything else.

What happened was a group of researchers slowly reduced the concentration of phosphorus containing ions in the medium of bacteria and slowly added arsenate to replace the phosphate. Over a period of time, the bacteria gradually began to accumulate the arsenate in places phosphate was previously present. This is not entirely surprising, considering how As and P are both pentavalent atoms and thus have similar chemichal proterties.

It should be noted, that the methods used to demonstrate arseno-diester backbone of DNA in these bacteria should be met with some skepticism, as none of the methods included a X-ray diffraction to directly demonstrate DNA with an arsenate backbone.

Of course, even if this was entirely true, all it would show is that the DNA backbone can be artificially changed when concentrations of PO4 and AsO4 are manipulated appropriately. It by no means shows an organism that naturally had DNA that was different naturally. Furthermore, the bacteria still used the same coding for transcriptional mechanisms: A, T, C, G.

So I fail to see why any of this is such a big deal.

jewish philosopher said...

It's getting closer the possibilty of life without DNA at all, but rather some other chemical. That would shatter one more (very lame) proof of evolution.