Why is Evolution really science!
BelgianStrider: Evolution is change in the heritable characteristics of biological populations over successive generations.These characteristics are the expressions of genes that are passed on from parent to offspring during reproduction. Different characteristics tend to exist within any given population as a result of mutation, genetic recombination and other sources of genetic variation. Evolution occurs when evolutionary processes such as natural selection (including sexual selection) and genetic drift act on this variation, resulting in certain characteristics becoming more common or rare within a population. The evolutionary pressures that determine whether a characteristic would be common or rare within a population constantly change, resulting in a change in heritable characteristics arising over successive generations. It is this process of evolution that has given rise to biodiversity at every level of biological organisation, including the levels of species, individual organisms and molecules.
The theory of evolution by natural selection was conceived independently by Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace in the mid-19th century and was set out in detail in Darwin's book On the Origin of Species. Evolution by natural selection was first demonstrated by the observation that more offspring are often produced than can possibly survive. This is followed by three observable facts about living organisms: (1) traits vary among individuals with respect to their morphology, physiology and behaviour (phenotypic variation), (2) different traits confer different rates of survival and reproduction (differential fitness) and (3) traits can be passed from generation to generation (heritability of fitness).Thus, in successive generations members of a population are more likely to be replaced by the progenies of parents with favourable characteristics that have enabled them to survive and reproduce in their respective environments.
BelgianStrider: In the early 20th century, other competing ideas of evolution such as mutationism and orthogenesis were refuted as the modern synthesis reconciled Darwinian evolution with classical genetics, which established adaptive evolution as being caused by natural selection acting on Mendelian genetic variation.
All life on Earth shares a last universal common ancestor (LUCA) that lived approximately 3.5–3.8 billion years ago. The fossil record includes a progression from early biogenic graphite, to microbial mat fossils, to fossilised multicellular organisms. Existing patterns of biodiversity have been shaped by repeated formations of new species (speciation), changes within species (anagenesis) and loss of species (extinction) throughout the evolutionary history of life on Earth. Morphological and biochemical traits are more similar among species that share a more recent common ancestor, and can be used to reconstruct phylogenetic trees.
Evolutionary biologists have continued to study various aspects of evolution by forming and testing hypotheses as well as constructing theories based on evidence from the field or laboratory and on data generated by the methods of mathematical and theoretical biology. Their discoveries have influenced not just the development of biology but numerous other scientific and industrial fields, including agriculture, medicine, and computer science.
BelgianStrider: - This is a civilised forum: what means 𝐚𝐧𝐲 𝐢𝐧𝐩𝐮𝐭 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐬𝐥𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐭𝐞𝐬𝐭 𝐢𝐧𝐬𝐮𝐥𝐭 𝐰𝐢𝐥𝐥 𝐛𝐞 𝐢𝐫𝐫𝐞𝐯𝐨𝐜𝐚𝐛𝐥𝐲 𝐝𝐞𝐥𝐞𝐭𝐞𝐝!
- This conversation seems to show some evidence to be a "scientific forum". What means 𝐚𝐧𝐲𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐢𝐬 𝐩𝐚𝐫𝐚𝐧𝐨𝐫𝐦𝐚𝐥 𝐛𝐚𝐬𝐞𝐝 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐭𝐡𝐮𝐬 𝐮𝐧𝐬𝐜𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐢𝐟𝐢𝐜 𝐢𝐬 𝐧𝐨𝐭 𝐚𝐜𝐜𝐞𝐩𝐭𝐞𝐝 and welcome.
There will be a great probability of deletion too.
- 𝐏𝐨𝐥𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐜𝐚𝐥 𝐨𝐩𝐢𝐧𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐬 𝐨𝐫 𝐰𝐨𝐫𝐥𝐝𝐰𝐢𝐝𝐞 𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐬𝐩𝐢𝐫𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐯𝐢𝐞𝐰𝐬 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐚𝐥𝐬𝐨 𝐛𝐞𝐭𝐭𝐞𝐫 𝐤𝐞𝐩𝐭 𝐨𝐮𝐭𝐬𝐢𝐝𝐞 the discussions.
- It is a forum where people "argue". That means they better come up with good argumentation, evidence and references. Questions needs to be answered in a decent satisfactory way.
𝐑𝐞𝐩𝐞𝐭𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐯𝐞 𝐜𝐥𝐚𝐢𝐦𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡𝐨𝐮𝐭 𝐚𝐧𝐲 𝐬𝐮𝐟𝐟𝐢𝐜𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐭 𝐛𝐚𝐬𝐞 𝐜𝐚𝐧 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐰𝐢𝐥𝐥 𝐛𝐞 𝐝𝐞𝐥𝐞𝐭𝐞𝐝.
- As it is a scientific conversation it is not exclusively limited to "Evolution".
- "Scientific philosophy" will be scrutinised and any "hidden subversive ( 𝘳𝘦𝘢𝘥 "𝘢𝘯𝘵𝘪-𝘴𝘤𝘪𝘦𝘯𝘵𝘪𝘧𝘪𝘤" ) objective" found in it can be a reason for deletion.
- Finaly: the only acceptable philosophy: it is 𝐧𝐨𝐭 𝐚 𝐬𝐡𝐚𝐦𝐞 𝐭𝐨 𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐜𝐞𝐞𝐝 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐜𝐚𝐧 𝐛𝐞 𝐰𝐫𝐨𝐧𝐠. It is in the same way 𝐧𝐨𝐭 𝐚 "𝐯𝐢𝐜𝐭𝐨𝐫𝐲" 𝐭𝐨 𝐛𝐞 𝐫𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐭. There is 𝐧𝐨 "𝐰𝐫𝐨𝐧𝐠" 𝐚𝐧𝐝 "𝐫𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐭", there is 𝐜𝐥𝐞𝐚𝐫𝐥𝐲 𝐧𝐨 "𝐚𝐛𝐬𝐨𝐥𝐮𝐭𝐞 𝐩𝐫𝐨𝐨𝐟" 𝐧𝐨𝐫 "𝐚𝐛𝐬𝐨𝐥𝐮𝐭𝐞 𝐭𝐫𝐮𝐭𝐡" 𝐢𝐧 𝐬𝐜𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐜𝐞.
Anyone starting commenting in this forum do formally accept those above mentionned "terms of behaviour".
axocanth: "As it is a scientific conversation it is not exclusively limited to "Evolution"." - Belgian
Just to get things started, do you feel the core issue you are addressing in this thread (i.e. whether or not the study of evolution is real science) is more scientific, or more philosophical, in nature?
Is there any scientific experiment we might do to help us answer the question of whether or not the study of evolution constitutes bona fide science?
Generally speaking (not just evolution), might we appeal to the so-called "scientific method" to help us answer the question of what does, and what does not, constitute good science?
It seems to me, given that the answer to the above questions appears to be negative in both cases, this conversation must be more philosophical than scientific. That is to say, it will have to be a philosophical discussion ABOUT science.
Do you agree? If not, can you tell me why?
BelgianStrider: 3 best evidences, for me, that Evolution is scientific and a more than valid "𝐬𝐜𝐢𝐞𝐧𝐭𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐜 𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐨𝐫𝐲"
- Endogenous retrovirus insertions.
- Fusion of human chromosome two.
- the fulfilled predictions surounding the discovery of Tiktaalik.
Clearly 3 cases that just give clear evidence that Evolution is "science"
axocanth: I personally have no problem with the study of evolution being classified as science. But I don't think you've answered my question.
Don't you think an examination of whether or not the study of evolution, or the study of anything else, constitutes science is a philosophical question?
How can science help to answer this question? By doing experiments? Apparently not.
BelgianStrider: I have no problem to speak some filosophical aspects about science ( it will be scrutinised for hidden goals, 𝘢 𝘨𝘰𝘰𝘥 𝘦𝘹𝘢𝘮𝘱𝘭𝘦 𝘪𝘴 𝘣𝘦𝘳𝘭𝘪𝘯𝘴𝘬𝘪 ). Though the main goal is to give evidence Evolution 𝐈𝐒 science, belongs to science and is applied with scientific methods.
Note I use the term method in plurial as there is evidently not just 𝐨𝐧𝐞 and 𝐨𝐧𝐥𝐲 𝐨𝐧𝐞 "scientific method". Where you seem to stick on.
axocanth: "Though the main goal is to give evidence Evolution 𝐈𝐒 science, belongs to science and is applied with scientific methods." - Belgian
I've no objection to the CONTENT of this claim. What I'm asking you is whether the claim you just made ought properly be regarded as a scientific one or a philosophical one.
For example, does the claim you just made appear in any scientific theory? Can it be derived from any scientific theory?
Clearly not. Would it not, then, be better characterized as a philosophical statement ABOUT science, or evolution in particular?
axocanth: Put another way, if you're going to provide us with evidence for the theory of evolution, weigh their merits, and so on, I would regard this as a scientific discussion.
On the other hand, if you're going to provide arguments for why the theory of evolution is bona fide science, I'd regard this as a philosophical discussion.
BelgianStrider: Well you can look for evidence that some scientifical fields do use some evidence to get their "theories" validated. Nothing much filosophical in that in my humble opinion. I agree some fields can be more filosophycal than others like the multiverse hypothese or conjecture.
For most of us, QM is so weird and counterintuitive that you might also consider it more philosophcal than scientific, though QM seems to be pure science based on a mathematical model.
Likewise we can consider the Newtonian and GRT just as describing mathematical models of our naturalistic surrounding
Does it give any philosophical explanation of i.e. Force and Gravity, I think not!
axocanth: Just in passing, you're quite wrong about David Berlinski (with an "i", not a "y" ).
It is indeed true that Berlinski is an outspoken critic of (neo-) Darwinian evolutionary theory (not evolution per se, mind you, as far as I'm aware).
It is also true that he has connections with the Discovery Institute.
What is not true is the accusation--which I see repeated endlessly--that he is an advocate of Creationism or Intelligent Design.
He has explicitly denied this on countless occasions.
I can provide direct quotes (i.e. evidence) if you like. We do want to get our facts right here, don't we?
BelgianStrider: I think I would go to providing evidence for the theory of evolution, weighting the merrits of the theory in other fields too like i.e. medical science.
Also in all the evidence given for evolution in other fields like paleonthology, antropology, geology, astronomy, genetics, bio-chemistry etc...
axocanth: "Also in all the evidence given for evolution in other fields like paleonthology, antropology, geology, astronomy, genetics, bio-chemistry etc..." - Belgian
Ok, thanks! What you're telling us here is that the study of evolution constitutes good science on the grounds that it is supported by a wide variety of evidence from various disciplines.
But isn't this a philosophical position? i.e. "Science is (at least) that which is supported by evidence"
This is not the kind of claim you'll find in any scientific theory, or derived from any scientific theory. It is a claim ABOUT science, a philosophical claim in my opinion.
BelgianStrider: Well just listen about his crap about the evolution of whales!
He is totally wrong and even have no clue what he is speaking about. His so called calculations are totally faulty and wrong.
Moreover he found some 500 necessary changes from cow to whale.
What makes it in the most simple case (equality of mutations) probably 250 changes from cow to common ancestor and again 250 from common ancestor to whale. Factually extremely very few changes for millions years of time!
Two possibilities: he is misusing his fame or he is a blatant ignoramus about evolution! Btw it is a clear 𝐬𝐭𝐫𝐚𝐰𝐦𝐚𝐧 to "say" cows are ancestors of whales. That "agument" is similar to say "we are descendants of chimpanzee's"
Well it is "berlinski" and it has been corrected
axocanth: Re above:
This is just plain silly, I'm afraid. Berlinski is a very sophisticated man who knows full well that no one claims whales evolved from modern-day cows. It is yourself who is attacking a strawman, I'm sorry to say.
It's just easier to say "cow" than "primitive cowlike creature".
In fact there is a video on Youtube, assuming it's still there, of Berlinski saying precisely this (and I paraphrase): "Every time I mention whales evolving from cows you can bet your bottom dollar some Darwinist will scream "This idiot thinks whales evolved from cows!! He knows nothing about evolution!!"
If you were more familiar with his work, you would know this.
BelgianStrider: Nope, it is a factual evidence that other disciplines do confirm the biological "𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐨𝐫𝐲 𝐨𝐟 𝐞𝐯𝐨𝐥𝐮𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧"! If you ant to make it "perse" a philosophical point, feel free.
Factually it is even not at all to be considered as philosophical, we have clear evidence confirming the "theory of evolution" and not only in biology. What makes that scientific theory (till now) so great!
BelgianStrider: I read what I like to read, and sorry, I have no intention to read berlinski, someone did and he is far from happy.
That youtube video you speak about thas been debunked too, and clearly shows where he is totally wrong and misleading! We can even have some suspicions he is lying !!!
axocanth: I'd humbly suggest, sir, that you are not in a strong position to critique Berlinski if all you have read is 2nd-hand accounts, liable to distortion.
BelgianStrider: oh btw it would have been "scientifically" more correct to say "from cowlike creatures" than "cows"
Reason more to say that instead of what he pretends to claim and use as excuse!
BelgianStrider: I would suggest you sir that you are entitled to read other accounts that confirms berlinski might be just a DI fraud.
I might not be in a strong mathematical nor "scientifical philosophical" position to critique berlinsky, but others being quite well in that position do confirm my opinions about him!
axocanth: It's hardly an excuse. It's like when we say--for brevity--that humans evolved from apes, knowing full well that what we mean is "primitive ape-like creatures". And we expect our audience (of a certain degree of sophistication) to understand this.
Do you seriously believe that a man, a polymath in many fields, a commentator on evolutionary theory for several decades, is under the illusion that evolutionary theory holds that whales evolved from modern-day cows?
C'mon now, dude
axocanth: "I would suggest you sir that you are entitled to read other accounts that confirms berlinski might be just a DI fraud." - Belgian
Sigh! Are we really going to plumb the depths of conspiracy theories in this forum? I was hoping we might leave that kind of thing to the less enlightened.
Berlinski--to repeat-- has explicitly denied innumerable times that he advocates Creationism or Intelligent Design.
And you think he's a liar, a fraud? Um, why would he do that anyway? Other Creationists seem to have no qualms about revealing their true colors.
BelgianStrider: He knew what the scientific tems are: he know also to which audience his you-tube videos are made.
So he had all the reasons to use the "ancient cowlike creatures" than "cows". Why did he not do that? Right his audience is in majority creationists.
Most scientist do still use the term "apelike creatures" as ancestor, not "apes"! Why ?????
axocanth: "Right his audience is in majority creationists." - Belgian
Belgian, you told us in your third post:
"It is a forum where people "argue". That means they better come up with good argumentation, evidence and references. Questions needs to be answered in a decent satisfactory way."
It's an admirable code of conduct. Now, may I see your "argumentation, evidence, or references" that most of Berlinki's audience are Creationists?
BelgianStrider: Tour explicitly claims he cannot deny abiogenesis,though all his youtube videos just do that. Moreover he implicitly and thus falsely pretend that the first living cells have to be eukariotes!
We are not speaking about worldwide fraud btw! We are clearly speaking about one institution, called DI, using fraud to impose their religious creationist view disguised as "scienfific ID'
Evidence do confirm that argument too.